Airbnb economy spreads as Airsorted chooses Dublin for global test bed

8 Nov 2016

Pictured: Airsorted’s Yvonne Pearse and founder James Jenkins-Yates. Image: Luke Maxwell

As well as being home to Airbnb’s global HQ, Dublin is to be the test bed for a new service called Airsorted, which makes it easier for people to be part of the sharing economy.

The Airbnb economy has provided an extra income for many homeowners worldwide, but now a new trend is intermediaries who take the hassle out of renting out homes.

In Dublin, Airbnb itself employs 200 people at its international headquarters at Hanover Quay, in the heart of Silicon Docks.

Airsorted is the brainchild of London-based entrepreneur James Jenkins-Yates who became an Airbnb host after leaving a well-paid job in finance.

‘For many people, Airbnb is not only a second income but it has become a second job and we want to change that’

“To bring in income, I put my spare room on Airbnb,” said Jenkins-Yates, who said he was always entrepreneurial and made £40,000 with his first business at 14.

“But when I got into Airbnb hosting, I realised the hassle that came with it in terms of cleaning, laundry and much more.”

And so, Airsorted was born as a marketplace serving the needs of Airbnb hosts who want to make the income from their properties, but aren’t keen on the necessary laundry and cleaning responsibilities that comes with it.

In fact, the unexpected workload is often cited as a reason most Airbnb hosts quit.

“At the moment, Airsorted is a management service and we have developed the technology to enable hosts to automatically book cleaners, and a delivery driver will come by and pick up dirty laundry and bring clean laundry. The idea is it happens automatically with no human input,” explained Jenkins-Yates.

Global platform ambitions

Jenkins-Yates said that the ambition is to build a global platform and that the Airsorted user base is outpacing US-based players like Pillow.

In London, the company employs 35 people as well as creating jobs for hundreds of cleaners. The company has so far raised £500,000 in private equity investment.

“Dublin is to be our international test bed; we see it as a breeding ground for tech and platforms ahead of going into other countries,” said the CEO.

He explained that Airsorted will take a 15pc cut of Airbnb bookings in return for the use of the service.

“The way we are doing this is providing a technology-first service that will help reduce the cost and take the manual input out of being an Airbnb host.

“For many people, Airbnb is not only a second income but it has become a second job and we want to change that.”

In London and Edinburgh, some 900 properties use Airsorted and that number is growing.

“The key is to thinking of this as a management layer that sits between Airbnb and the responsibilities that come with providing an optimal Airbnb experience,” said Jenkins-Yates.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years