Several recent studies show that a growing number of people are using Airbnb's platform to create micro hotels by renting multiple properties to people looking for a place to stay.
As the chart below from a San Francisco Chronicle study shows, 513 of the city's 4,000 that Airbnb hosts list multiple properties.
A study of New York by Skift found in that city 30% of hosts list multiple properties - and 10 "super-hosts" had more than 30 listings each.
We're not surprised by these numbers. Entrepreneurs are great at identifying and exploiting opportunities - and Airbnb creates lots of opportunities.
Barring legal challenges and changes, we think the number of Airbnb micro hotels will continue to grow. We also think these micro chains will steadily increase their share of Airbnb listings and rental revenue.
The reasons are simple. Because of their business focus, micro hotel will provide better properties and service. They will also garner more reviews and promote their sites more effectively. These factors will lead to consumers increasingly choosing micro hotels over true peer-to-peer rentals.
A similar thing happened on Ebay.
Not many remember this, but initially Ebay was positioned as a peer-to-peer commerce platform. The vision was to create a site where people could buy and sell things to other people. But it didn't take long for entrepreneurs to recognize the value of Ebay and businesses large and small quickly dominated the site.
We're big fans of the sharing economy and we love the peer-to-peer commerce vision.
But the reality is as long as opportunistic entrepreneurs exist, peer-to-peer commerce platforms will be used by businesses too. That's the nature of capitalism.
And despite claims that the sharing economy is changing our economic system, entrepreneurs find a way.