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As Airbnb plots to go public, the home-sharing company announced Friday that it would create a new "host endowment" and allocate 9.2 million shares to fund it.
Airbnb said it will begin investing the money back into its host community — using input from a new host advisory board — once the value of the endowment surpasses $1 billion. Bloomberg had previously reported that, after a stock split, Airbnb shares are currently valued around $34.88 apiece, giving the endowment a rough value of around $320 million to start.
The company said that it does have the option to add more stock, up to 2% of the company's value, over time. Early ideas of how the money may be used on hosts include grant programs for educational workshops or annual payouts to groups of hosts. The endowment is a separate idea from Airbnb's interest in giving stock to its host community at the time of the IPO, similar to Uber and Lyft's system for rewarding drivers during their public offerings.
Biz Carson ( @bizcarson) is a San Francisco-based reporter at Protocol, covering Silicon Valley with a focus on startups and venture capital. Previously, she reported for Forbes and was co-editor of Forbes Next Billion-Dollar Startups list. Before that, she worked for Business Insider, Gigaom, and Wired and started her career as a newspaper designer for Gannett.