With Airbnb creating some really stiff competition for hotel chains across the globe, Choice Hotels may be ready to enter the sharing economy and return the favor. In a recent article for HotelNewsNow, Editorial Director Jeff Higley (@jeffhigley1) may have just broken the biggest news story the sharing economy has seen in 2016.
Choice Hotels International is soon to launch a platform that will allow its customers to rent units from third-party vacation rental management companies. CEO Steve Joyce announced that he wouldn’t rule out the potential to enter the peer-to-peer rental space.
Higley explains that Joyce is moving towards a model that provides vacation rental management companies the technology to list properties on its website, taking the listings “directly to the consumer.” Though Choice is not jumping straight into a peer-to-peer model, that would be the next logical step. Joyce admitted, “I wish we would have thought of Airbnb…” which leads me to believe he’ll want to explore those waters soon enough.
Choice’s entry into the sharing economy would mark the first large-scale attempt by a major hotel chain to side-step their traditional model of hotelery to compete with the Airbnb juggernaut, which reported $250 million in revenue last year. Other big brands, like Amazon, have entered the space to try and take back some of the revenue poached by sharing disruptors. Let’s see if Joyce makes the same choice for Choice (that’s a tongue twister).
What are your thoughts? What brands do you think have potential value in the sharing economy? Leave me a comment and let’s discuss!