DoubleDragon’s Hotel 101 pursues US listing to battle Airbnb

By Miguel R. Camus@miguelrcamusINQ

February 9, 2024 12:00:00

DoubleDragon Corp.’s Hotel101 is closing in on a pioneering US Nasdaq listing this year and has secured a stock ticker code that leaves no ambiguity as to which global hospitality giant it aims to challenge.

DoubleDragon, a Philippine-listed property company owned by tycoons Edgar “Injap” Sia II and Tony Tan Caktiong, said the stock ticker code “HBNB” was reserved by overseas subsidiary Hotel101 Global Pte. Ltd. If that sounds familiar, this is because “HBNB” is just one-letter different from “ABNB”—the Nasdaq stock ticker of American rentals behemoth Airbnb Inc.

Hotel101, a condotel chain that aims to compete with its aggressive rollout of uniform-sized rooms at affordable rates, said it offered investors a more stable alternative as some jurisdictions battled Airbnb’s unregulated hotels.

“It’s worth noting that [it is] unlike the other existing short-term apartment rental websites and apps that have no consistency and have been recently disallowed in major cities because it is observed to cause security issues and friction with other residents living in the same building using their apartments as their main family residence,” DoubleDragon said in a stock exchange filing on Thursday. Meanwhile, DoubleDragon said it planned to enter the US exchange by using a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The US listing will help it raise money to support ambitious plans to build 500,000 hotel rooms in 101 countries by 2040.

Financial projections

The company was still finalizing the amount of proceeds to be raised, Sia said on Thursday. It previously stated plans for Hotel101 Global to reach a valuation of $17 billion (P950 billion), citing “internal financial projections.”

“DoubleDragon expects Hotel101 Global to very soon become the very first Filipino company to list via SPAC in the US Nasdaq Stock Exchange, and seen to become one of the major brands, concept and business model export of the Philippines, given its asset-light business model could become one of the major sources of US dollar inflow to the Philippines from 2025 onwards,” the company said in the filing on Thursday.

Hotel101, which sells individual units to investors and then rents these out on their behalf, has several locations in the Philippines and three ongoing projects overseas. The international projects are located in Niseko, Japan; Madrid, Spain and Los Angeles, United States. INQ