… and Propertyfinder Strengthens Its Base with $20M Investment
The Dubai-based Propertyfinder has sold 10% of its shares in a primary investment round to the Swedish investment firm Vostok New Ventures, for $20 million. This sets the overall value of the company at $200 million. Founder and CEO Michael Lahyani said the investment will be used to expand sales and marketing operations in the MENA, and develop the company’s proprietary technology. The investment comes despite bearish forecasts for Dubai’s real estate sector, Propertyfinder’s home market. According to CBRE consultants, property sales prices dropped by double-digit percentile points in 2015, and further drops are expected in 2016. But Lahyani said Propertyfinder hasn’t seen any significant slowdown in traffic. Founded in 2005, the company employs more than 150 people, and operates real estate classifieds platforms in Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Morocco, Bahrain, Lebanon, and the UAE. It is the fourth MENA company in Vostok New Ventures’ investment portfolio, after a recent $1.7 million investment in the Egyptian recruitment site Wuzzuf, and a combined $15.5 million in two Pakistani companies.