Airbnb Goes to Cuba

Airbnb is setting up shop in Havana. Although that’s a misnomer since the whole point of companies like Airbnb is that there’s no actual shop to set up. And that’s exactly why it’s only a matter of time before more on-demand tech companies will follow — especially when importing goods, building infrastructure, and hiring labor aren’t central to their business models. Uber and Lyft will no doubt be Cuba-bound soon. As more tourists are expected to flock to the country, it makes sense that nimble, wealthy American tech startups are trying to capture the market first and fast.

As Quartz reports:

While there are already more than 165 listings for AirBnB spots in Havana, only 14% of Cubans have internet access, mainly through internet cafes where an hour’s access costs $4.50—an high rate in a country with an average monthly income of $20.

It’ll be interesting to see how the on-demand “sharing” model pans out in one of the world’s last Communist nations.

Read more at Quartz:

Quartz