Last week, Online Marketplaces reported a possible SPAC deal that would put a leading Asian proptech company on the public scene and it seems those rumors have come to fruition.
Leading proptech company for Southeast Asia, PropertyGuru, has announced it has joined with SPAC Bridgetown 2 Holdings Limited. Once the agreement closes (between the fourth quarter of 2021 and the first quarter of 2022), the combined company will begin trading on the NYSE as a public company.
On the deal, Chairman of the Pacific Century Group and Thiel Capital LLC brainchild, Bridgetown 2, explained that choosing PropertyGuru was a simple choice. Matt Danzeisen, Chairman, Bridgetown 2, said:
“We evaluated a number of very impressive companies across Southeast Asia and PropertyGuru is the perfect fit for us. The Company is a category leader and category creator – they helped define the PropTech industry in Southeast Asia and have taken it to new heights by leveraging technology and data to create a trusted and transparent digital property marketplace. We believe PropertyGuru is just scratching the surface of what it can deliver as Southeast Asia’s property market continues to accelerate, and we are excited to work with Hari [V. Krishnan, CEO of PropertyGuru] and his talented team to capture the incredible opportunities that lie ahead.”
Southeast Asia is among one of the fastest growing markets in the world. PropertyGuru has not only benefited from the market trajectory but has also focused exclusively on technology innovation in the face of the COVID crisis to offer its users transparency and some of the best proprietary data and technology out there.
Hari V. Krishnan, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, PropertyGuru Group, said:
“We have established a market leadership position in the Southeast Asian property ecosystem and a track record of revenue growth. Much of our success is the result of our investment in technology over the years and capturing strategic growth opportunities in recent times.
“We have a story to be told and found the right partner to help us tell it to public market investors. We are delighted to partner with Bridgetown 2 as we accelerate our mission to be the trusted advisor for property. This process of becoming a public company will provide us with greater financial resources to do what we do best – helping people find, finance and own their homes in an efficient and transparent manner. We believe the strategic, proactive steps that we have taken over the past 18 months will enable us to stay ahead of the market’s evolving needs, which are increasingly being shaped by the growth of affluent and digitally-enabled populations living in cities across Southeast Asia.”
Peter Thiel, President, Thiel Capital, said:
“The market for property is probably the oldest market in the world, and only now is it beginning to change rapidly. As PropertyGuru spearheads that change in Southeast Asia, Bridgetown 2 will provide capital and expertise to accelerate it even further.”
Richard Li, Founder and Chairman, Pacific Century Group, said:
“Southeast Asia is a unique market in that it has very high economic growth but lacks quality services in many sectors. Fast growing middle-class, increased urbanization and technological disruption create a unique combination. We recognize the transformational impact of these long-term trends and are focused on operating our own core business and investing in local champions that are successfully leveraging technology to reshape the region’s economy and how people carry out their everyday lives.”
The SPAC-driven IPO is expected to deliver up to US$431 million of gross proceeds through the contribution of up to US$299 million of cash held in Bridgetown 2’s trust account.
Advising the transaction is Merrill Lynch (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. as exclusive financial advisor to PropertyGuru, and Latham & Watkins LLP and Allen & Gledhill LLP as legal advisors to PropertyGuru.
Merrill Lynch (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., Citigroup Global Markets Inc., KKR Capital Markets Asia Limited and TPG Capital BD, LLC are serving as placement agents to Bridgetown 2. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP are serving as legal advisors to Bridgetown 2.
PropertyGuru has seen a number of positive developments within the last year, including acquiring REA Group’s Malaysia and Thailand assets, acquiring MyProperty Data, launching an immersive content experience, launching a digital mortgage marketplace and brokerage, and launching a new visual search feature. All have boosted the company’s reliability and cinching its place within the market and beyond.