News Corp-controlled REA Group is to sell its Malaysian and Thai businesses into a merger with PropertyGuru, in exchange for an 18 per cent share.
Australian-headquartered REA owns Property.com.my and Brickz.myin Malaysia, and thinkofliving.com and Prakard.com in Thailand.
REA Group will have a director on the enlarged PropertyGuru Group, following the deal due to close in July.
Established in Singapore, PropertyGuru wants to be the top proptech group in southeast Asia, and currently operates leading property marketplaces in five of the biggest economies in the region.
It says PropertyGuru.com.my and iProperty.com.my have rapidly growing complementary audiences, and both brands will be retained.
PropertyGuru chairman Olivier Lim says REA Group’s “deep sector insights” will bolster PropertyGuru’s capabilities. “This will further accelerate the digitalisation of the property sector of this exciting region.”
Owen Wilson (pictured) chief executive of REA Group – which is 62 per cent owned by News – said the two companies’ teams share a similar vision of opportunities in the region. “Joining with the PropertyGuru Group creates new opportunities for collaboration and access to a deeper pool of expertise, technology and investment,” he said.
Highlinghts of REA Group’s progress in Malaysia and Thailand have included the launch of the iProperty PRO tool, and the move into the fintech space with the launch of Loancare.