Rohan experienced discrimination on Airbnb first-hand when he tried to book a property. At first, he was told that the property wasn’t available on the dates requested, even though the property was listed available on the platform. Since his plans were flexible, Rohan inquired about different dates. The second request was also denied. Feeling that “something was off,” Rohan’s friend (who happens to be white) attempted to make the same reservation and was approved instantly.
Upset by this experience, Rohan reached out to Airbnb, but they were unhelpful. Then, Rohan wrote about his experience on Medium. The blog post went viral. He received over 2,000 emails from individuals, many sharing stories similar to his own. It became clear that “discrimination based on race is a systemic problem on Airbnb and other sharing platforms. In fact, it’s even been studied and confirmed by a 2016 Harvard study on the issue.”
Given the extent of the problem, Rohan, a six-time serial entrepreneur, felt he had to take action. “I felt that, given my background and the resources we have at our disposal, we have an obligation to do something about it.” And so Innclusive was born.