The Proptech Sonneil Will Triple its Sales in 2019

4 February 2019 – Eje Prime

Sonneil is broadening its horizons. The Spanish proptech, founded in 2014 by the former director of the international team at Solvia, Alfredo Millá Ferrero, expects to close this year with turnover of €1.5 million, triple the figure recorded last year. The startup now has a portfolio comprising more than 3,700 homes, 1,000 of which it is marketing exclusively. Over the medium term, the company does not rule out entering new markets, although it is not something that it is considering for this year.

The company, headquartered in Alicante, specialises in the sale of new build second homes to foreigners on the Spanish coast. The company, which operates online only, relies on digital marketing to “minimise intermediaries and reduce costs”, explained Millá to Eje Prime.

“Selling to foreigners is a very opaque sector, and with lots of intermediaries, there is a very large accumulation of costs”, said the executive. “There has been a transformation in all sectors, except for the real estate sector, where we are still working with the same model”, he said.

Alongside Millá, the drivers behind the project were Albert Ribera, one of the founders of the portal Trovit; Juan Busquets, Partner at Busquets Abogados, and Juan Pedro Moreno, CEO of Accenture.

Since it was founded, Sonneil has carried out three rounds of financing, subscribed to in their majority by shareholders, but which have also given capital access to investors such as Domingo Caamaño and Vicente Rodero, former directors of BBVA, and Sevenzonic Ventures, the investment group backed by Javier Rodríguez Zapatero, former CEO of Google, and Manuel Gálatas.

The company’s portfolio, which is mostly owned by property developers and family offices, is concentrated along the Mediterranean coast, Mallorca and Ibiza.

Sonneil’s main clients are Belgian Flemish, Russian, British and Dutch, although Millá Ferrero commented that there has been a notable decrease in the number of British clients in recent years, especially since the Brexit referendum (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by Milana Mishchenko)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Angel Cano’s Firm to Market Flats in Benidorm’s Giant In Tempo

4 October 2018

The proptech firm Sonneil will market 270 flats, seeking clients for the tallest residential building in Spain.

After years of paralysis, the tallest residential building in Spain, at 192 meters, will begin work on its last phase of construction, while starting sales of its 270 flats. The SVP fund (which owns the property) has commissioned the real estate company Sonneil, owned by Ángel Cano, the former CEO of BBVA, to sell the apartments on an exclusive basis. Sales are expected to begin shortly, the proptech firm announced on its website.

Sonneil is a proptech, which apply information technology to real estate transactions, based in Alicante. Its founder is Alfredo Millá, an ex-executive at Solvia, Sabadell’s servicer. Juan Pedro Moreno, president of Accenture; Albert Ribera, founder of Trovit; and the lawyer Juan Busquets are partners.

Last year, Sevenzonic, run by several former executives at BBVA, including Ángel Cano, and Javier Rodríguez Zapatero, former general manager of Google in Spain and president of the ISDI business school, also invested in the company. Sevenzonic was founded to invest in new technology companies.

The real estate agency Sonneil has not revealed any potential prices or the date that sales will begin. This firm is highly focused on international clients looking for coastal housing in Spain. More than 60% of the buyers it attracts are foreigners, mainly Belgians, Nordics, Dutch and Germans.

As a proptech company, Sonneil uses hyper-segmented online marketing tools segmented by client type, through social networks, Google Ads and web positioning. The real estate company seeks to reduce the number of intermediaries that act in a sale, especially in the case of international clients, becoming a single agent.

Construction on the building began in 2007. Its developer, Olga Urbana, was declared insolvent in 2014. Sareb (the bad bank of the Spanish government,) became its main creditor, selling the debt to SVP Global last year. The American fund took over the project and announced its intent to finish construction on the skyscraper, which has been paralysed for years.

Original Story: Cinco Días – Alfonso Simón Ruiz

Translation: Richard Turner

JLL Creates a €85M Fund to Invest in Proptech Companies

6 June 2018 – Eje Prime

JLL is betting on the future and is going to invest €85 million in proptech. The international real estate consultancy firm has launched JLL Spark Global Venture Fund, a venture capital fund through which it intends to acquire stakes in the shareholdings of companies that focus their businesses on offering digital solutions to the real estate sector.

The operation responds to the boom in digitalisation in the sector in all of its segments and aspects. From the use of BIM to facilitate the daily management of logistics spaces to virtual reality, which lets you visit your house before you buy it, and including big data, which provides all the information retail operators could wish for to allow them to know the needs and preferences of potential clients.

The fund will be global, and so the more than 220 proptech firms that are already registered in Spain will have the opportunity to receive a boost from JLL. The vehicle will also focus on seed capital investments and the first round of financing for companies.

“In 2017, investments in technological real estate companies grew by 25%, to USD 3.4 billion, and although the development of proptech firms is on the rise, many challenges still lie ahead and that is precisely there where JLL wants to add value”, said Mihir Shah, co-CEO of JLL Spark Global Venture Fund.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Spotahome Raises USD40M & Opens its Capital up to US Fund Kleiner Perkins

6 June 2018 – Eje Prime

Spotahome is seducing capital once again. Just months after raising USD 16.1 million in a financing round led by Seaya Ventures, the company has raised another USD 40 million (€34.1 million) to support its activity and has opened its capital up to the US fund Kleiner Perkins.

Existing investors, Seaya Ventures and Passion Capital, have also participated in the funding round, according to La Información. The group is going to allocate the funds obtained to expanding and consolidating its management team, as well as to the digitalisation of the links in its real estate market value chain.

“Spotahome has digitalised and scaled up a large part of the real estate rental industry in a very skilful way”, says Mood Rowghani, Partner at Kleiner Partners, in a statement. The Venture City (Cabify), All Iron Ventures and Steelhorse Capital have also participated in this latest Spotahome financing round.

In March, Spotahome announced the acquisition of Erasmusu, a Spanish community of international students that owns a transaction model for rental housing. The agreement reached between the two companies resulted in the creation of Spotahome Group, a European proptech holding company dedicated to brokering online residential rentals.

That same month, the proptech launched in the Czech Republic, Latvia, Greece and Hungary, and also extending its presence in the countries where it already operates, such as Nice, Montpellier, Lille and Córdoba. Currently, Spotahome is present in 65 countries and 450 cities, where it has a portfolio of more than 130,000 rental properties.

Original story: Eje Prime

Translation: Carmel Drake

Citibox Signs Agreements with Blackstone, Testa & Schibsted

12 January 2018 – Eje Prime

Citibox is enlarging its portfolio of real estate clients. In recent weeks, the Spanish proptech, which specialises in the installation of parcel collection lockers, has signed contracts with the US investment fund Blackstone, as well as with the Socimis Testa, owned by Banco Santander and BBVA, and Mazabi, and international groups such as Schibsted, the owner of Fotocasa and Habitaclia, as sources at the company have explained to Eje Prime.

These new clients are following in the footsteps of Merlin, Colonial and Aedas Homes, companies in the real estate sector that already work with the proptech, which was created in Valencia in 2015. The company’s headquarters are located in Madrid, one of the two cities, together with Barcelona, in which it currently operates, as it plans its international expansion, scheduled for 2018.

As a result of the agreement reached with Blackstone, Citibox will install its boxes (lockers) in the Il-lumina building in Barcelona, as well as in the Moraleja Building One (MB-ONE) and Delta buildings in Madrid. The Catalan building is home to tenants such as Coca-Cola and TV3, whilst in Madrid, the proptech will provide its service in offices that house the headquarters of Kelloggs and SAGE (MB-ONE), as well as the Socimi Fidere (Delta) (…).

Meanwhile, Testa, the Socimi specialising in the management of residential rental assets and in which Banco Santander and BBVA hold stakes, has engaged Citibox to install its boxes in five residential buildings located in Conde de Orgaza, in Madrid.

The property developer, which plans to debut on the stock market in the coming months, will be the third largest real estate company to place its trust in the Spanish proptech after Citibox also signed agreements with the listed company Aedas Homes and with Vía Célere to install its boxes in some of their new residential urbanisations.

In the centre of Madrid with Mazabi 

Citibox is also strengthening its position in the centre of Madrid. Not in vain, another one of the clients that the company has secured in the last month and a half is the family office Mazabi. That group led by Juan Antonio Gutiérrez has engaged the services of the proptech for a recently renovated building on Calle Recoletos.

In addition, the company founded and led by David Bernabeu has signed other agreements with national and international companies such as Grupo SM, Capgemini, Tecnatom, Oxford University Press, Grupo Schibsted and Crédito y Caución (…).

The growth of Citibox is indicative of the boom in the proptech industry. In Spain, the sector is now generating 5,000 jobs and aspires to continuing increasing that number, driven by the rate of investment, which has allowed the business to increase its revenues by 300% (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by Jabier Izquierdo)

Translation: Carmel Drake