Onefinestay is an upscale accommodation company, that operates an exemplar Matchmaking business model, where a homeowner (host) can offer their property to a traveller looking for upmarket accommodation.

Onefinestay was launched in 2009 in the UK by Greg Marsh, Demetrios Zoppos, Tim Davey and Evan Frank. It’s mission is to help homeowners earn a hassle-free income off of unused properties that would otherwise stand empty, and provide travelers with a new category of upscale accommodation i.e. an ‘unhotel’4 experience. In February 2011, Onefinestay raised $3.7 million Series A funding, and in June 2012, the company announced a $12.2 million Series B funding round, led by US-based venture capital firms. As of 2014, the company has raised around $40 million in investment.

Onefinestay has two customer groups: travellers, who are looking for an accommodation, and hosts. Hosts are typically high-income individuals who are interested in renting out their unused property and want to outsource the operational aspect of the rental process. Travellers tend to be middle to high-income individuals who travel often and are either looking for a luxury break or want to get away from the traditional hotel experience and live like a local.

Learn more about the Matchmaking Business Model

You identify two or more customer groups and brings them together in your marketplace.

Engagement  — Value Creation Proposition
Onefinestay allows travellers to live like locals, by staying at real people’s homes. Travellers can enjoy all the creature comforts while still receiving hotel amenities that matter, such as toiletries, cleaning, Wi-Fi and local recommendations. Unlike AirBnB that serves as a marketplace to link travellers and hosts Onefinestay provides a full-service platform for their customers, and keeps hosts and travelers separated.

Onefinestay offers a website which matches customers looking for properties to rent, and property owners looking to rent out their unused property. Onefinestay allows hosts to rent their home when not needed, giving them the ability to make revenue off of unused space. This is generally short-term but can extend to long-term (but not permanent). Onefinestay offers a complete management service for hosts including insurance, cleaning and maintenance for the property. For a traveller, Onefinestay offers a unique way to experience a new city or location, giving people access to stay in one-of-a-kind homes. It also allows a traveller to experience a destination from the viewpoint of a local.

Delivery — Value Chain
Hosts list their property on the OneFineStay’s website, and the company will manage the entire booking process, in addition to providing the property with hotel-style services such as toiletries and bed furnishings. Onefinestay contracts with third party agencies to provide cleaning services. Onefinestay also manages all administrative duties such as pricing and payment, and will pay the host directly at the end of the traveller’s stay.

Travellers search listings in their destination city, and submit a request on Onefinestay’s website to confirm availability and price. Travellers are provided with hotel-like amenities in a more relaxed at-home environment. They receive an iPhone providing free data and local calls, and are given local area recommendations. Travellers receive 24/7 phone support and Wi-Fi in all properties. Hosts and travellers do not rate each other, and do not interact.

Monetisation — Value Capture
When a traveller books online, the full payment is charged on a credit card. Travellers pay the pre-determined listed nightly rate for the property. Hosts pay an unspecified percentage of the nightly rate to Onefinestay to cover maintenance costs such as cleaning, insurance as well as services (rumored to be around 40% of nightly rate). In addition there is an ‘agency fee’ which depends on the property, time of year and occupancy level of the home.




Onefinestay, it’s like AirBnB, Minus the Regulatory Troubles. July 14, 2014. http://www.inc.com/christine-lagorio/home-rental-unhotel-onefinestay.html

Q&A with Onefinestay’s Even Frank. http://www.cnbc.com/id/100435726

Onefinestay hits 1,000 luxury homes in London, LA Rumored to be next. August 12 2014. http://techcrunch.com/tag/onefinestay/

Disrupting the Hotel Biz: Enter the Un-Hotel. October 15, 2012. http://www.forbes.com/sites/karstenstrauss/2012/10/15/disrupting-the-hotel-biz-enter-the-un-hotel/

Onefinestay: The Rich Man’s AirBnB. August 28, 2012. http://www.bloomberg.com/bw/articles/2012-08-28/one-fine-stay-the-rich-mans-airbnb

Disclaimer — Written by Adele Lewis and edited by James Knuckles under the direction of Prof Charles Baden-Fuller, Cass Business School. This case is designed to illustrate a business model category. It leverages public sources and is written to further management understanding, and it is not meant to suggest individuals made either correct or incorrect decisions. © 2015