US Listings App REAL Messenger to go Public via SPAC Financing

March 30, 2023
Share this Post: 

REAL Messenger, a US-based listing app backed by Swedish real estate broker Frederik Eklund, has announced its intention to go public less than a year after launch.

REAL occupies a hybrid space whereby the app acts as a social media platform, messenger app and real estate listing portal. Users can scroll properties as if they are browsing Instagram, chat as if they are using Whatsapp, and transact on property.

The startup is positioned on the principle of making the real estate experience a fun and joyful experience; more connected, a bigger sense of social community, and with a strong focus on AI and data.

The app includes a real-time chat app, document sharing, and integration with other real estate software.

REAL claims that its average session time is above 10 minutes (Zillow is the closest app experience at six minutes).

It has garnered more than 350,000 downloads in 35 countries since an initial $12M investment by Eklund and fellow co-founder Thomas Ma.

And the company now aims to go public in a deal worth $150M via Singapore-based special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) Nova Vision Acquisition Corp. The deal is expected to close in summer 2023.

SPACs are public, non-commercial entities that exist to invest and merge with money-making businesses. The financing method is seen as less risky than traditional IPOs.

REAL shareholders would receive $75 million in the form of Nova Vision ordinary shares at closing, and may receive an additional $75 million in Nova Vision ordinary shares in the form of post-closing earnout consideration.

Thomas Ma, co-founder and CEO at REAL Messenger, said:

“In a short period, REAL Messenger has proven to be a critical asset for the real estate industry.

“We want to enable investors to invest in REAL Messenger earlier than they would through a traditional model. We believe the SPAC model will help us in our path to becoming THE social app for real estate. We are so confident in our technology and our business model that we have agreed for half of our consideration [property or services exchanged for stock] to be in the form of a performance earnout.”

Frederik Eklund, co-founder, said:

“The real estate industry has had a real thirst for a global social network for years … and REAL Messenger, powered by AI, is quickly leading the way.

“By going public we can run even faster and enter even more markets. This is the future of real estate, and I’m proud to be the co-founder of the company.”

Other SPACs to have been involved in proptech mergers in recent years include Bridgetown 2 Holdings, which merged with PropertyGuru in 2022.


March 30, 2023
Harvey is an experienced property journalist and copywriter. He has written about the property industry since 2015, starting at The Property Franchise Group in the UK, before moving to Spain to work for Spotahome. He has blogged for the private rented sector, ghostwritten for UK property experts and written case studies for franchise owners around the UK. Harvey joined Online Marketplaces as a News Editor in 2022.

Subscribe to our mailing list to get the famous, free Friday newsletter!

News and analysis to help build better online marketplace businesses, in your inbox, every Friday

Related News

Hemnet Vs Rea Group
Analysis: Hemnet Still Playing Catch-up to REA Group When It Comes to Vendor Paid Advertising

Vendor-paid markets are great for real estate portals. For more than a decade the leading Swedish player Hemnet has charged...

Read More
Ohmyhome Full Year Results Net Losses But Big Ambitions
OhMyHome 2023 Full-Year Results: Net Losses But Positive Outlook for Nasdaq-listed Marketplace

The Singapore-based publicly listed company OhMyHome has released its 2023 full-year financial results. Highlights include: Revenues totalled S$5.0 million (US$3.8...

Read More
Homely Financial Results
Australian Portal Homely Records 16% More Enquiries in 2023

Australian challenger portal Homely generated over 15.5 million enquiries in the 12 months from April 2023. Homely, which competes with...

Read More
Yandex Q1 Strong Performance From Divested Assets
Yandex Q1 2024: Net Losses for Remaining Assets After Large Scale Divestments

Yandex N.V., the Dutch holding company of the marketplace giant Yandex, has released its financial results for the first quarter...

Read More