Airbnb suspends marketing, cuts executive pay in half

Company has also paused hiring apart from a small amount of key positions

Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Airbnb)
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Airbnb)

Airbnb has suspended all of its marketing in an attempt to save $800 million this year.

Its founders will also not take any salary for the next six months, and top executives will take a 50 percent pay cut, according to Reuters. The company has paused hiring as well, with the exception of a few key roles.

Airbnb had a phone call on Wednesday with bankers to discuss the extension of a $1 billion debt facility as it deals with the economic slowdown sparked by the coronavirus pandemic, and the company has told employees they are not likely to get a bonus this year. Layoffs could be a possibility as well.

Other short-term rental startups — including Lyric and Sonder — are cutting jobs amid the slowdown.

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“Airbnb is resilient and built to withstand tough times,” the company said in a statement to Reuters, “and we’re doing all we can to strengthen our community and our company.”

Airbnb has long been viewed as one of the major challengers to the hotel industry, which is also being hammered by the coronavirus pandemic. [Reuters] — Eddie Small

Read more about how coronavirus is impacting the hospitality industry