PropertyGuru to go public in US through US$1.78bn SPAC merger

PropertyGuru is merging with special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) Bridgetown 2 Holdings, to go public on the New York Stock Exchange. The combined company will have an enterprise value of about US$1.35 billion and an equity value of approximately US$1.78 billion at closing. PropertyGuru, backed by KKR, TPG Capital and REA Group, will retain over 70% ownership of the listed company. At the same time, KKR, TPG Group and REA Group will roll 100% of their equity into the combined company.

PropertyGuru’s management team, led by CEO and MD Hari V. Krishnan (pictured) and CFO Joe Dische will continue to lead the public company after the completion of the transaction. According to PropertyGuru, the transaction is expected to deliver up to US$431 million of gross proceeds, including a US$100 million private placement from investors including Baillie Gifford, REA Group, Naya, Akaris Global Partners, and one of Malaysia’s largest asset managers. The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2021 or first quarter of 2022, subject to regulatory and stockholder approvals, and other customary closing conditions. Bridgetown 2 Holdings is formed by Pacific Century Group and Thiel Capital. 

News of the merger with Bridgetown 2 specifically was first reported by Bloomberg in June. According to its sources then, the transaction could value the combined firm at as much as US$2 billion. News about PropertyGuru eyeing a US listing through a merger with a SPAC first surfaced in March this year.

PropertyGuru currently has more than 2.8 million monthly real estate listings and serves 37 million monthly property seekers and 49,000 active property agents across Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. According to the company, it delivered average annual revenue growth of approximately 25% in the four years preceding the COVID-19 pandemic.

Over the past 18 months, PropertyGuru has made moves in the industry. In May, for example, it acquired REA Group’s Malaysia and Thailand assets, with the transaction expected to close by the end of this month to mid-August this year. It also acquired Malaysian online property data company, MyPropertyData, and introduced an immersive content experience named FastKey Storyteller.

On the marketing and branding front, it appointed Remona Duquesne to the newly created role of director of brand overseeing Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Thailand in May this year. Earlier this year, it promoted Sushmita Mohapatra to head of content marketing and Ryan Thoo to director of consumer marketing. Both individuals oversee all five markets that PropertyGuru is present in.

PropertyGuru is not the first company in Southeast Asia in recent times to merge with a SPAC to go public. Grab, another well-known company in the region, announced in April this year that it is merging with Altimeter Growth Corp, a SPAC, to go public in the US. The merger aims to raise about US$4.5 billion in cash and valuing Grab's shares at US$39.6 billion.

Related articles:
PropertyGuru acquires REA Group's iproperty.com.my and Thailand entities
PropertyGuru hands Remona Duquesne keys to new director of brand role
PropertyGuru's brand and consumer marketing lead exits, new director of brand role created
Circles.Life's Gaurav Gupta lands new role at PropertyGuru
PropertyGuru MY hunts for marketing lead to oversee newly-acquired firm