PropertyGuru to acquire REA Group's Malaysia and Thailand units

Launched in 2007 to help Singapore residents search for real estate online, PropertyGuru has become a household name in Singapore.
Launched in 2007 to help Singapore residents search for real estate online, PropertyGuru has become a household name in Singapore.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - Singapore real estate start-up PropertyGuru has agreed to acquire all of the shares in REA Group's operating entities in Malaysia and Thailand, whose sites include iProperty.com.my and thinkofliving.com.

As part of the agreement, Australia's REA Group, which is majority-owned by Mr Rupert Murdoch's News Corp empire, will get an 18 per cent equity interest in PropertyGuru and appoint a director to its board, the South-east Asian company said in a statement on Monday (May 31). No price has been disclosed for the deal.

The announcement comes after a flurry of deal-making by the most valuable start-ups in the region.

Ride-hailing and payments giant Gojek and e-commerce leader Tokopedia announced earlier this month they will combine their businesses to create the largest Internet company in Indonesia. Close Gojek rival Grab Holdings last month agreed to go public in the United States through a combination with Altimeter Growth Corp in the largest-ever merger with a blank-check company.

Launched in 2007 to help Singapore residents search for real estate online, PropertyGuru has become a household name in the property-crazed city-state. Today, it is the largest real estate marketplace in South-east Asia, with operations in countries including Vietnam, Malaysia and Thailand. It is backed by KKR & Co and TPG Capital.

In October 2019, the company scrapped plans for an initial public offering on the Australian stock exchange over valuation concerns. About a year later, it announced $300 million in new funding from existing backers.