Ball to the edge from a veteran brand in Spain. The Swedish investment fund EQT announced this Thursday the purchase of Idealista, the largest Spanish real estate portal, for 1,321 million euros. It is the largest financial operation of a Spanish internet company to date.
The Scandinavian group has acquired 100% of Idealista’s shares in the Apax Group fund and its management team, who will reinvest “significantly” in addition to directing the company’s operations. The acquisition will allow the classifieds business to expand “through its strong sectoral and digital knowledge», As collected in a release. Idealista’s operation will “boost growth”, allowing it to “further develop its portfolio of services.”
EQT and KKR have bid on the real estate portal in recent weeks, but it has finally been the Swedish fund that has added more capital. Founded in 2000 by the entrepreneur Jesus Encinar, Idealista has become one of the leading services in Spain and Portugal in the business of rental advertisements and property sales. The operation will officially close in December.
After establishing its leadership position in recent years, Apax Group in 2015 acquired 80% of its shares for 273 million euros. The service has approximately 40,000 real estate agencies and generates about 38 million unique monthly users. “Idealista has the potential to grow at an accelerated rate,” he said in a statement. Carlos Santana, director at EQT Partners. Jesús Encinar, CEO of Idealista, values ”EQT’s deep knowledge of the real estate sector”.
In January of this year, the National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC) opened an investigation on Idealistic and six other real estate portals for artificially inflating prices.