Is Airbnb really worth $10B? New investors apparently think so

Capital-raising for startup said to peg company's valuation at 10-digit figure

Airbnb founders
Airbnb founders

Home-rental startup Airbnb is close to talks for funding that would value the company at $10 billion.

TPG Capital, a private-equity firm based in both Texas and California, is expected to be the dominant investor. The round of fundraising could reach $500 million. Dropbox and Chinese cell-phone manufacturer Xiaomi were the biggest of the 21 companies that raised new funds in the last year that pegged their valuation at $1 billion or more, the Wall Street Journal reported. The value for Airbnb has grown four-fold in a two-year period.

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As of November, New York state’s top 40 Airbnb hosts each grossed at least $400,000 over the past three years, a total of $35 million over that time. In that same period, the top 100 hosts grossed $54 million, as previously reported.

Also last year, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman subpoenaed data from Airbnb as part of a probe into the website’s compliance with a 2011 law, which makes it illegal to rent out an apartments for less than 30 days unless the owner or renter is also present in the home. [WSJ]Mark Maurer