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Airbnb valued at $30 billion after $850 million in new funding round

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Home-sharing company Airbnb has raised $850 million in a round of funding, bringing the startup-turned-vacation superpower’s valuation to a cool $30 billion.

Bloomberg reported the equity round on Friday, citing a disclosure filed with the state of Delaware. Equidate, a private stock market company, submitted the company’s July 28 filing. While an Airbnb spokesperson declined to comment on the influx of funding, the filing also does not mention a particular investor or investor group.

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Bloomberg also cites Equidate in claiming that the company has now raised $3.2 billion in total equity, including a $1.6 billion round of funding in July 2015 at a $25.6 billion valuation.

As Business Insider commented, the new valuation makes Airbnb the second-most-valuable tech startup in the United States, which had been previously given a $68 billion valuation.

The company’s funding rounds are part of an effort to avoid going public, the Wall Street Journal reported in late June, and also comes at a time when Airbnb is handling legal battles both domestically and abroad.

City and state-wide regulations have plagued the company’s abilities to operate under normal circumstances as recently as mid-July, when U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein of California, Brian Schatz of Hawaii, and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts requested that the Federal Trade Commission probe online short-term housing rental businesses like Airbnb.

In a letter to FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, the senators wrote, “We are concerned that short-term rentals may be exacerbating housing shortages and driving up the cost of housing in our communities.”

Previously, in late June, the company sued San Francisco following the rollout of new short-term rental rules requiring the company and others like it to register listings with city. More specifically, it would require Airbnb to post registration numbers on advertised listings or email the numbers and host names to the city’s Office of Short-Term Rentals or face fines up to $1,000 per day.

To work with regulators and help navigate legal issues, the company hired former mayors from cities around the world to serve on an advisory board. Airbnb also brought on former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder as an adviser to focus on “strengthening corporate policies around racism and other discrimination on the site.”

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The "good hands" people at Allstate Insurance want to support home-sharing hosts. If you rent your home temporarily with Airbnb or other home-sharing services, not every type of loss may be covered on your existing homeowner insurance policy. Allstate will soon offer an add-on to your policy that covers home-sharing gaps, according to the Chicago Tribune.

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The valuation remains the same as earlier in the year, despite growing regulation concerns across the world. In San Francisco, Airbnb recently defeated Proposition F, but more cities are starting to see the effects of the company’s “shared economy” approach to rentals. Chicago is also cracking down on hosts operating in the city, after finding out 4,300 of the 4,500 locations in the city were unlicensed.

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