REA (ASX:REA) to trade SE Asian platforms for stake in Property Guru

Company News

by Michael Luu

Digital real-estate marketplace operator REA Group (ASX:REA) is set to trade its South East Asian platforms for an interest in Asia's largest online property portal and a board directorship.

The ASX-listed company has today announced the decision to transfer ownership of its Malaysian and Thai subsidiaries to acquire an 18 per cent stake in PropertyGuru.

The transaction is poised for completion in July and is not subject to REA shareholder approval. The Rupert Murdoch-backed proptech company is also required to withdraw as the biggest investor in Singapore-headquartered counterpart 99 Group with a 27 per cent stake.

REA commented on the transaction, “Building on the success of our operations in Malaysia and Thailand, this transaction presents a unique opportunity to create the most compelling digital property classifieds company in Southeast Asia and accelerate the next wave of proptech innovation across the region”.

The deal would involve a swap of rights to Malaysian and Thai digital assets including  iProperty.com.my, brickz.my, prakard.com and thinkofliving.com for equity in “a larger, more diversified company in a region that continues to experience rapid digital transformation”.

PropertyGuru is South East Asia’s pioneer in the rapidly emerging proptech industry, with a strong digital presence across five countries in the region.

The real estate marketplace operator has generated 6.5 million mobile app downloads and attracted 35 million property seekers monthly in Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Property Guru aspires to shelter “Asia under one roof” by featuring as many as 2.8 million property listings per month and maintaining partnerships with an estimated 47,000 real estate agents.

REA's sell-down of its South East Asian entities is estimated to increase the company's divestment revenue to $10 million for the $22 billion global digital business.

Shares in REA (ASX:REA) are trading 0.4 per cent higher at $165.13