NEW YORK (TheStreet) --Home rental Web site Airbnb is reportedly near closing an almost $1 billion funding round at a $24 billion valuation. Airbnb has increased its revenue projection for this year to more than $900 million after performing better than it expected in the first quarter, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cited a person familiar with the matter.
That would be up from its revenue of $250 million in 2013. A $24 billion valuation puts the company above hotel operator Marriott International (MAR), which is valued at $21 billion, and nearly double the $14 billion valuation of travel Web site Expedia (EXPE).
Airbnb only expects the growth to continue. The company reportedly expects its revenue to reach $10 billion in 2020. Founded in August 2008, Airbnb says it operates in 34,000 cities in 190 countries and has enabled more than 35 million guests to be hosted around the world.
Last month, Airbnb released a study conducted by HR&A Advisors that found the company generated $1.15 billion in economic activity in New York alone last year and supported more than 10,000 jobs. The study found that 42% of guest spending occurs in the neighborhood where they're staying, with $844 million of guest spending occurring at New York businesses last year.
Airbnb said it would share this study with state lawmakers in Albany and urge them to modify state laws to allow New Yorkers to share their homes and help the Airbnb community pay hotel and tourist taxes in New York. This follows New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman's October 2014 report that found that 72% of short-term rentals on Airbnb appeared to violate New York law. He estimated that New York is likely owed over $33 million in unpaid hotel taxes from short-term rentals on Airbnb.
The Web site has also faced regulatory issues in cities like San Francisco and New Orleans, as well as overseas -- it was fined 30,000 euros in Barcelona for violating local tourism laws.