Proptech firm Blox to buy controlling stake in Justo for Rs 350 crore, ET RealEstate
The artificial intelligence-powered proptech company Blox is set to acquire a controlling stake in Justo, a mandate brokerage firm with deep presence across Maharashtra, at an enterprise value of ₹350 crore. The transaction, which is at an advanced stage, is expected to be concluded with cash and stock, said persons with direct knowledge of the development.
The acquisition assumes significance against the backdrop of the ongoing alignment between India’s real estate and burgeoning proptech sector that has transformed the way property transactions are conducted.
Both the companies currently have annual mandate businesses of around ₹3,500 crore each.
“The strategic acquisition is expected to help strengthen Blox’s position as one of the leading proptech companies in India with a consolidated gross merchandise value (GMV) of around ₹8,000 crore across its various businesses,” said one of the persons mentioned above. With this acquisition, Blox will gain a majority stake in Justo, enabling the latter’s brokers and developer partners to tap into Blox’s artificial intelligence (AI) sales and marketing technology. ET’s email query to Justo remained unanswered until the time of going to press. Blox declined to comment.
Justo aims to connect real estate developers and home buyers and has worked across over 80 real estate projects, and conducted transactions of over 4.2 million sq ft.
Started in 2020, Blox is a fully integrated online real-estate service that allows customers to make their home-buying experience as seamless as possible. It provides prompt site visits along with transparency and convenience through its comprehensive home-buying experience. It assigns a relationship manager to every homebuyer to assist with virtual and physical site visits across the city.
In May last year, Blox acquired property sales and marketing company Plinthstone REMA for $1.5 million and was added as an extension of its portfolio to be known as Blox Exclusive. In December, Blox raised $12 million or nearly ₹100 crore in a series A funding round – the largest in the proptech sector in India. This funding round was backed by its existing investors from Silicon Valley, new strategic investors and angels including Kunal Shah, founder of CRED.
The proptech sector in India is still in its nascent stage, but there is big scope for growth and development, said industry experts. The number of proptech start-ups in the country have increased 48% post the pandemic but still account for only 6% of the total recognized startups in the country. Out of the around 65 unicorns created in India over the last year only few were in the proptech sector.
Proptech has been growing steadily in India over the last couple of years led by the Covid19 pandemic-induced digital acceleration. The deployment of technology has helped in improving transparency with access to data related to transactions in the sector that has long remained opaque.