Local Press Reports Four Private Equity Firms Preparing Bids for Idealista

March 20, 2024
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Madrid-based newspaper El País is reporting that four private equity firms from around the world are lining up bids to take over leading Spanish real estate portal idealista.

Quoting "financial sources" the masthead reported in January that the portal operator had refinanced €300m of its debt while its two largest shareholders, EQT and Apax Partners, got together with major Spanish investment banks to discuss a possible sale of the company or a float on the public markets via an IPO.

The latest reporting once again quotes "financial sources" in stating that idealista's owners have hired Morgan Stanley to oversee a sale while four private equity firms prepare bids:

  • CPPI (Canada)
  • TA Associates (USA)
  • Hellman & Friedman (USA)
  • Cinven (UK)

The article does name U.S. portal giant CoStar as a possible buyer but claims that the sellers would prefer to hand control over to a private equity firm.

EQT paid former owner Apax Partners €1.3 billion for an 80% stake in Idealista in 2020 and subsequently sold off tranches of the company's shares to Oakley Capital and back to Apax Partners. The Pittsburgh-based firm currently owns 55.1% of idealista and would stand to make a sizeable return on investment if the mooted sale price of €2.5 billion is achieved.

The last available financial records filed with Spain's Mercantile Registry show that the parent company of idealista's Spanish operations generated €118 million in revenue in 2022 (a 17% increase on its 2021 figure).

Since 2020 idealista has added assets to its portfolio including the CRM Inmovilla and rental software Rentger. It has also acquired the Italian number three portal player Casa.it and has risen to a position where it competes for dominance with the historic market leader Immobiliare.it.

Idealista Assets

March 20, 2024
Since March 2020 Edmund's job has been to read about, write about, collect data on, analyse and generally know about real estate marketplaces and the companies that run them. Before that he worked at the aggregator Mitula Group (which became Lifull Connect) for five years.

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