In a keynote presentation at the 3rd Annual Vacation Rental Data and Revenue Management (DARM) Conference last month, Shaun Stewart discussed the recent “seismic shift” in the vacation rental industry over the last 18 months.
“What’s clear is VR was already in the biggest seismic shift it’s ever seen,” Stewart said. “But pre-pandemic, we were all talking about how this was continuing to go from 1 out of 10 trips in the US, to 2 out of 10 trips, to 4 out of 10 trips. And what happened during the pandemic is that a level of fuel just got added to that fire that nobody’s ever seen before.”
In this keynote, Stewart explained how this explosion of demand during the pandemic has affected outside investment, current and future shifts in supply, and distribution strategies. He also addressed technology, Vacasa, and the future of rate parity. There was so much interest in Shaun’s presentation, that DARM emcees, Sarah Bradford and Tim Cafferty hosted him on their Sarah and T podcast to follow up on the concepts presented and how VRMs can capitalize on the current environment.
Although our intent was to offer this presentation exclusively on VRDARM.com as part of the paid video package, I feel strongly that all of our readers would benefit from hearing this presentation. There is a lot here, and Stewart shares valuable data. In addition, I highly recommend also listening to the Sarah and T podcast follow-up episode as they dive deeper with Stewart into several of the topics discussed in the presentation below.
If you’re not familiar with Shaun Stewart, he graduated from Cornell University in hospitality and worked with Expedia from 2000 – 2010, mainly focused on negotiating deals with suppliers. He then helped to build Jetsetter, which sold to TripAdvisor in 2013. After working for TripAdvisor for 18 months, he moved his family to California in 2014 to join Airbnb as Global Head of Vacation Rentals, focusing on growing its performance outside of urban city centers and into leisure space. He was the first to explore and build integrations with property management systems for vacation rental management companies. In fact—this is the role he was in when I first met Shaun and heard him speak at the 2015 Liverez Partner Conference after Airbnb had successfully completed its first VRM API integration with Liverez’s PMS. In 2016, Shaun left Airbnb to join Google to develop Waymo, Google’s self-driving car company, after which he returned to New York as CEO of Newlab, an advanced technology accelerator which has raised 1.6 billion over the last four years to help 220 different companies get to market.
I highly encourage you to listen to both Shaun Stewart’s keynote presentation from the DARM Conference and the follow-up Sarah and T Podcast. It will help in understanding the current vacation rental landscape and give you insight and ideas about how to approach the future.
You can also purchase the video package from the DARM Conference at https://vrdarm.com/
Thank you so much for sharing this! For those of us who were not able to attend the conference in person, it was amazing to be able to plug into this presentation and glean some very important insights. I was particularly happy to hear Shaun talk about the concepts around providing something unique. “Be the Hard Rock, not the Venetian or Bellagio” really resonates with me as we steadily build StayLuxe Vacation Homes with purpose and intention.