Airbnb, the legitimate way for people to get cash for letting people crash on their couch, just signed a 10-year lease in the Giftcenter building at 888 Brannan, for a space that's about five times as big as their current Potrero Hill digs. The move, says CEO Brian Chesky, "is a commitment not only to staying in San Francisco, but creating a lot of jobs." Maybe now the City will ease off of trying to collect hotel taxes from them?
The company currently employs 125 people, and the move allows them to hire about 900 more, which they say they plan to do. Airbnb, founded in 2008 in San Francisco, now boasts spare-room and spare-couch listings in 19,000 cities across 192 countries.
They expect to move in to 888 Brannan next February. In the meantime, the company wants to have "a conversation" with City Treasurer Jose Cisneros, who against Mayor Ed Lee's wishes announced plans last month to impose the city's 14% hotel tax on people renting out their rooms and apartments. That "conversation" may have just changed.