The Portland-based vacation rental management company, Vacasa, announced Tuesday, October 17 an investment of $103.5 million. The Series B round is currently being led by Riverwood Capital as well as other investors such as Level Equity, NewSpring, and Assurant Growth Investing.
Although Vacasa has yet to disclose its terms of value, Bloomberg has reported that the company’s investment has doubled its value. Currently, Vacasa is considered the largest vacation rental management company in the U.S. The company’s total revenue has tripled over the course of 18 months, landing the business as a steady competitor against platforms such as HomeAway and Airbnb.
According to GeekWire, Airbnb is currently valued at approximately $31 billion whereas HomeAway, the online vacation platform recently acquired by Expedia in 2015, is valued at $3.9 billion. However, what makes Vacasa so much more valuable is the type of service they provide.
Airbnb and HomeAway offer to facilitate a sharing economy between the homeowners and renters. However, Vacasa helps homeowners manage their booking process from beginning to end.
“People aren’t inherently looking for peer-to-peer,” said Vacasa co-founder and CEO Eric Breon. “People are just looking for that accommodation that isn’t available through traditional channels. Yet at the same time, they very much want the professionalism that comes with the hospitality industry.”
Up to 53% of American adults who choose to vacation report feeling refreshed after returning home. Many of these vacationers often look online for places to stay and relax, but Vacasa says that online booking sites aren’t the company’s direct competitors.
In fact, Vacasa has been known to partner with sites such as Airbnb and Booking.com as well as other sites. This is because, according to GeekWire, booking sites such as Airbnb are like eBay whereas Vacasa intends to become the Amazon of the vacationing industry.
Yet, Airbnb may be making its own run for the number one spot in the vacation management industry. According to Skift, Airbnb has revealed new tools for its managing vacation rental properties and has been making progressive movements for an IPO. Still, Vacasa seems unconcerned in the meantime.
“We are very much through the challenges,” said Breon. “Every part of our business is now scalable.”