While traveling the world after selling his tech company, Sean Conway wanted to rent out his San Francisco pad on Airbnb, but found it a hassle to manage long distance.
That spurred him to co-found Airenvy, a company that brings a Silicon Valley playbook to the burgeoning field of managing Airbnb rentals on behalf of hosts.
Launched in January, Airenvy lists the most Airbnb properties in San Francisco: 59. It takes a 12 percent commission for handling everything from cleaning to keys. It has 15 employees and a dozen vendors.
His game plan: refine the model, then take it national and global.
“A lot of people really love Airbnb, thrive on it and have really neat experiences,” Conway said. “I want to help facilitate that.”
The top 10 San Francisco hosts on Airbnb collectively control 248 listings, or 5.2 percent of all the places for rent. They include property managers, hacker hostels and even hotels.
The No. 2 host by listings, Come2SF, with 51 houses and apartments, is also a property management company.
More on Airbnb Data:
- Airbnb in NYC: The Real Numbers Behind the Sharing Story
- The 10 Airbnb Super-Hosts That Rule New York City
- Airbnb’s New York City Neighborhoods From Most Popular to Least Liked
Founder Bernat Pons said controversy may change its business model.
“With all these new revelations like the (proposed) law by (San Francisco Supervisor) David Chiu, I prefer to be on the low-key side,” he said. “We are going to look for another kind of rentals, more like long-term.”
No. 3 is the HackerHome Network — four houses in Dogpatch, Mission Bay and the Sunset and on Telegraph Hill with bunk beds for tech types who pay about $70 a night for crash space, copacetic roommates and a communal vibe.
Nos. 4, 5, and 6 by numbers of properties are somewhat mysterious. They may be property management firms, but don’t provide company names. Instead, Lois (23 properties), Annette (21 properties) and Maria (14 properties) identify themselves as individuals who enjoy hosting and meeting new people.
No. 7 and No. 8 are actual hotels. The Regency Inn and Stay in SF Residence, low-budget inns near the Civic Center, each offer 14 rooms via Airbnb. Neither returned calls.
The Donatello, with 13 properties downtown and in Union Square, describes itself as a time-share hotel. It did not return calls.
International Hacker Hostel, with 13 spaces, grew out of an existing tourist hostel, Pacific Tradewinds Hostel in Chinatown, which now partners with co-working space RockIT CoLabs.