Spanish Islands Fining Airbnb For Allegedly Overstepping Boundaries

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Eric Lieberman Deputy Editor

The government of Spain’s Balearic Islands announced Tuesday it is fining lodging firm Airbnb 300,000 Euros (roughly $370,353 USD), according to Reuters.

Regulators claim the now-powerful startup failed to register prospectively available homes.

Consisting of several islands (the largest of which include Ibiza, Menorca, Mallorca, and Formentera), the Balearic Islands are part of Spain but also have their own sub-national governing powers. Ibiza, a hot destination for international partygoers, and the rest of the archipelago generate a lot of tourism revenue — thus naturally sparking the interest of Airbnb, which aims to provide living accommodations.

Airbnb, however, did not satisfy recent regulations for around 20 offerings, according to local officials, making its operations technically illegal. The U.S.-based tech company said it plans on appealing the monetary penalty, according to Reuters.

Airbnb CEO and cofounder Brian Chesky said in late December that more than three-million people used the service in 2017, marking a huge increase from just 6,000 in 2010. (RELATED: Trump’s Childhood Home Is Available On Airbnb)

But as Airbnb grows in popularity, so too does regulators’ skepticism of the tech company — including in Europe. Over recent years and months, the European Union and member states like Germany and Spain have often either clamped down on firms from Silicon Valley, the American tech hub, or voiced their intention to do so.

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