Online real estate startup, Housing.com has acquired online discussion forum for sharing real estate information, “Indian Real Estate Forum” (IREF) for about INR 8 Cr. The company is also said to be in final talks for acquiring Gurgaon-based P.E. Analytics Pvt Ltd, which owns a real estate data product PropEquity for over INR 80 Cr., the deal is expected to close in the coming weeks.
IREF has an active user base of over 1.5 lakh and it acts like an social network to meet the expectations of the people in their need for clarity and simplification of real estate experiences and the dealings. It claims to offer unbiased and transparent information on new projects, developers, localities, brokers and plots.
As per the terms of the deal, IREF will function as an independent identity under the charge of Ravish Naresh, who is an Housing co-founder.
Housing plans to introduce a “Ask me anything”(AMA) forum on IREF, which will act like a place where people can ask all the queries and doubts related to projects, brokers and builders. Whereas, PropEquity which helps PE investors, developers, and financial services professionals – spot market trends and generate insights will be used for getting these users on the Housing platform.
In January, Commonfloor had acqui-hired startup Bakfy which was a anonymous chat app, the company had plans to create a mobile-only anonymous social network with its acquisition. Last month, it had launched CommonFloor Retina, which offers a ‘real’ property experience for the seekers allowing them to view, review and assess multiple properties from anywhere at any point of time.
Housing.com was founded by 12 IIT alumni, last year, it had raised $90Mn from SoftBank.with participation from Falcon Edge Capital. Prior to this, it had raised INR 115 Cr. in funding from Helion Venture Partners, Nexus Venture and Qualcomm Ventures. The company is also said to be in talks with Softbank for $500 Mn funding round which is expected to close soon.
On the other side, Commonfloor had raised funding from Google Capital in January, and last year it had raised two funding rounds.
India’s real estate market is estimated to reach $180 Bn by 2020. In just residential property, the top eight Indian cities will see an additional demand of 2.8 Mn units in the next five years, according to property consultant Cushman & Wakefield. Apart from Housing.com and Commonfloor other players in this segment include 99acres, MagicBricks, Indiaproperty, Makaan, among others.