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Axel Springer acquires minority investment in digital real estate platform Purplebricks

Purplebricks ()

Axel Springer announces to acquire a minority investment in the UK-based company Purplebricks, a digital real estate platform, through a capital increase and the purchase of secondary shares from existing holders.

The purchase price for the participation of 11.5 per cent amounts to a total of 125 million GBP (143.3 million EUR as at 26 March 2018), corresponding to a price per share of 3.60 GBP (4.12 EUR as at 26 March 2018). There are currently no plans to acquire additional shares. As a result of the investment, Dr. Andreas Wiele, president Classifieds Media Axel Springer, will join the company’s board of directors.

Purplebricks was launched in the UK in April 2014 and operates purplebricks.co.uk, which in recent years has significantly increased its unaided brand awareness in the UK to almost 40 per cent. The company is also active in Australia and the USA. Purplebricks supports its clients with a technological and scalable platform for the sale of real estate. Purplebricks has been listed on the London Stock Exchange since December 2015 and is currently valued at 869 million GBP (995 million EUR as at 26 March 2018).

Dr. Andreas Wiele, president Classifieds Media Axel Springer, said: “Under the leadership of its founder Michael Bruce, Purplebricks has created a highly innovative digital real estate platform and has become the clear market leader in the UK in a short space of time. For Axel Springer, this minority stake offers the opportunity to participate in an innovative, fast growing business model in new markets.”

Michael Bruce, CEO Purplebricks, added: “Purplebricks is a fast growing company with huge ambition and in Axel Springer we recognise, great people, knowledge and expertise. Together our ground breaking strategic partnership will benefit both parties and help to bring positive change to the way consumers buy, sell and let property, while delivering value for all shareholders. There is a huge opportunity and together we can realise it."

Closing of the transaction is conditional upon a resolution of the general meeting of Purplebricks to increase its share capital, such meeting will be held mid-April.

Axel Springer is a member of FIPP.

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