China: As Airbnb asserts its presence across the hotel and leisure accommodation industry globally, it is making rapid progress on the hiring front in China to break through its competitive domestic market.
James Mattone from Thinknum Media reported on China Daily reporter Fan Feifei’s article in the State Information Center, in which Feifei predicted that the rental and homestay market would reach 50 billion yuan in value by 2020.
An Li, vice president of Airbnb China, told Feifei about the current market situation:
She said: “The vacation rental services are still nascent. China is one of the most important markets for Airbnb and we have seen the Chinese government holds a positive attitude toward the sharing economy.”
As such, Airbnb is ramping up its hiring efforts, and according to Mattone, the rental firm is now recruiting in China more than any other country outside of the US, where its headquarters are located. This trend began with Airbnb targeting engineers but it has since broadened its attention to operations and community support roles.
This pattern echoes what other successful companies have done when starting up in a new country. Operations and engineering staff help to build the foundations of the product before the company seeks to boost its user base of hosts and clients to establish brand loyalty.
With Airbnb as a disruptor to the traditional hospitality space in China, homegrown brands such as Xiaozhu are reacting by posting more and more job openings, including intern positions, in technology, marketing and sales. As the Jack Ma-led firm continues to grow at rapid pace, Mattone believes Airbnb is looking to hone in on customer loyalty to establish its presence further in the country.
The trend was originally predicted in our ShortTermRentalz 2019 predictions piece at the end of 2018, in which we foresaw a shift ing of attention by Airbnb towards the Asian market and particularly China and India.