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Airbnb China Chief Was Ousted Over Relationship With Subordinate

Hong Ge, vice president of Airbnb’s China division, resigned earlier this week after the company learned of allegations about an inappropriate personal relationship between him and a subordinate, a person briefed on the decision said.

Mr. Ge, who reported directly to CEO Brian Chesky as Airbnb’s first China chief, left after about four months in the executive role. The company found that his relationship with a female Airbnb employee violated the company’s code of ethics and hurt the office culture in Beijing, the person said. The exact nature of the relationship was unclear.

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Mr. Ge, a longtime Facebook engineer, was elevated into the top role in the China office earlier this year after Airbnb struggled to find an outside candidate from Chinese tech companies, a person familiar with the matter said. The company also faces tough competition from homegrown vacation rental companies like Xiaozhu and Tujia, which recently raised $300 million.

--Juro Osawa and Shai Oster contributed to this article.

Jordan Elpern-Waxman commented on this article.
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