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February 23, 2017

Airbnb checks in to social payments with startup acquisition

Airbnb acquire payments startup Tilt, and prove motives for branching out.

By Tom Ball

Airbnb’s previously announced plan for the acquisition of payments startup Tilt has now been brought to fruition, with Airbnb now showing a keen interest to move beyond lodging.

According to reports, Tilt assets have been taken over by Airbnb, although the Tilt app will remain in use for the time being. Airbnb are also maintaining the core staff, including CEO James Beshara.

Airbnb’s move into payments could be a complimentary area to develop on for the trip-booking process.

Tilt was founded in 2012, and arrived at the forefront of peer-to-peer money transfers with grounding in group payments. This early exposure to the payments landscape and Tilt’s rivalling of contenders such as GoFundMe would have been incentive to Airbnb in their search for specific talent.

This purchase is not a standalone instance, as ChangeCoin and Luxury Retreats have also been ticked off the shopping list. Airbnb has been valued at $30 billion, and is utilising  capital to expand the available talent base, and to expand its reach across industries.

Having seen huge growth, the debate surrounding the possibility of the company issuing an initial public offering (IPO) is heating up.

       READ NOW: What is Airbnb?

This may be at the forefront of the minds of Airbnb executives, as becoming publically traded would lead to raised awareness of the company, and perhaps its new endeavours such as payments.

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As reported by TechCrunch, Joe Zadeh, Airbnb’s VP of product said: “Airbnb and Tilt have a common vision for building community-oriented products that make it easy to bring people together. Tilt’s experience and expertise complement our ongoing efforts to transform the way people travel. By joining forces, we’ll reimagine how groups travel and enhance Trips, our new platform that brings together where you stay, what you do, and the people you meet all in one place.”

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