Rentals of homes across New York City by Airbnb meant close to $2 billion in annual economic impact for the city, the controversial startup said on Wednesday.
The home-sharing company released numbers for its top five performing markets, with New York leading the list at $1.96 billion, edging out London’s $1.95 billion.
Los Angeles comes at a distant third with $890 million, while Berlin and San Francisco allegedly saw $510 million in impact each.
The numbers come as a result of Airbnb’s decision to increase transparency after costly battles around the country about how its business model affects housing stock in low vacancy rates.
New York’s City Council recently proposed a series of strict reforms, including penalty increase for violating a 2010 law that bans renting out an apartment for less than 30 days without a tenant in the home during the rental.
The fines would jump to between $10,000 and $50,000 from the current $1,600 to $25,000.
At a council hearing in late October, Airbnb critics and supporters alike showed down in competing press events in front of City Hall.
A de Blasio administration official at the hearing reported that the city’s task force to regulate illegal hotels fielded 681 complaints and issued 1,325 violations since January.
In 2014, New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman reported that more than 70 percent of Airbnb’s New York City listings were illegal.
At the time, the company did not push back on the statistic, which was based on data given to the attorney general by the company after a court battle