Airbnb says no IPO in 2018, names first COO

Short-term home rental service Airbnb Inc will not go public this year, the company said on Thursday, and it appointed its first chief operating officer as it pursues global growth and tighter management of its finances as a more mature company.

"We're working on getting ready to go public and we will make decisions about going public on our own timetable," Chief Executive Officer Brian Chesky said in a statement.

San Francisco-based Airbnb, a service where homeowners and renters can list their house, room or apartment for rent, had been on a list of anticipated initial public offerings this year.

In line with a number of changes to help prepare the company for long-term growth, Airbnb promoted Belinda Johnson, who has been at the company since 2011, to COO, Chesky said. She was most recently its chief business affairs and legal officer. 

RELATED: Check out the top-rated Airbnb's around the world:

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The best Airbnb listings in the world

Historic and Elegant Suite in a Former Ryokan 

Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan  
Price per night: $165

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Unique 1 bedroom villa in Seminyak 

Kuta, Bali, Indonesia 
Price per night: $96

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

The Brandy Bus - Renovated Bus in Quiet Paradise

Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya
Price per night: $80

Photo credit: Airbnb.com

Cave with garden at Sacromonte

Granada, Andalusia, Spain
Price per night: $60

Photo credit: Airbnb.com

Holiday in Toscany in the Strettoio

Rignano sull'Arno, Tuscany, Italy
Price per night: $64

Photo credit: Airbnb.com

Luxury room with Taipei 101 View 

Wenshan District, Taipei City, Taiwan
Price per night: $55

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

SECRET GARDEN SANCTUARY Rio Del Mar 

Aptos, CA, United States   
Price per night: $189 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Vacation house in etno-eco village Humac 

Jelsa, Split-Dalmatia, Croatia
Price per night: $61

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

I SETTE CONI - TRULLO EDERA 

Ostuni, Brindisi, Italy 
Price per night: $82 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Exceptional property private beach 

Governador Celso Ramos, Santa Catarina, Brazil  
Price per night: $81 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Malibu Yurt Retreat On Organic Farm 

Malibu, CA, United States
Price per night: $145 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

PRIVATE 3 BEDR. RIAD, AN EXCLUSIVE RENTAL 

Marrakesh, Marrakech-Tensift-El Haouz, Morocco
Price per night: $92 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Tile House 

Twentynine Palms, CA, United States 
Price per night: $185 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Jack Sparrow House, Cornwall 

Helston, Cornwall, United Kingdom 
Price per night: $136 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

A quiet yurt in Savoie - Bauges

Bellecombe-en-Bauges, Rhone-Alpes, France 
Price per night: $84 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Bennu House - Most Romantic Design Villa in Ubud 

Ubud, Bali, Indonesia 
Price per night: $124 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Unique Cob Cottage 

Mayne Island, BC, Canada 
Price per night: $132 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Off-grid tiny cottage in nature 

Sakuho, Minamisaku District, Nagano Prefecture, Japan 
Price per night: $93 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

NewEarth Haven - Amethyst Crystal Dome 

Ubud, Bali, Indonesia 
Price per night: $77 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Hidden Gem of Budapest City Centre 

Budapest, Budapest, Hungary 
Price per night: $75 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

OLD TOWN SQUARE, FREE PARKING! 

Prague, Prague, Czech Republic 
Price per night: $82 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

Cubehouse in central Rotterdam 

Rotterdam, South Holland, Netherlands 
Price per night: $164 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

3 Story Cape Town Penthouse

Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa 
Price per night: $116 

Photo credit: Airbnb.com 

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Johnson's responsibilities will include overseeing Airbnb's legal, policy and communications teams, Chesky said. Her appointment follows the addition of Airbnb's first independent board director, outgoing American Express CEO Ken Chenault, announced last week.

Although such changes are consistent with startups preparing to go public, Chesky said that Airbnb is "not going public in 2018."

He said the company is profitable and has a $5.5-billion balance sheet.

Founded in 2008, Airbnb is in close to 200 countries and valued at $31 billion. It has clashed with hoteliers and authorities in cities including New York, Amsterdam, Berlin and Paris, and has been criticized for exacerbating housing shortages in already tight markets.

Airbnb also said on Thursday its chief financial officer, Laurence Tosi, would leave the company to work full-time at his investment fund, Weston Capital Partners. Airbnb has enlisted a search firm to find his replacement. Airbnb's head of financial planning, Ellie Mertz, will fill in as interim head of finance. (Reporting by Heather Somerville)

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