SmartCrowd, a Dubai-based real estate crowdfunding website that allows individual investors to take a “fractional” part in a rental property, has financed over 70 properties and transacted over AED 50 million since its $3 million investment round. The company has raised more than $3 million in a bridge deal after seeing a 100 percent increase in its investor base quarter over quarter.
Since the pandemic, SmartCrowd, which lets private investors buy a “fractional” portion of a rental property, has nearly doubled its investor base.
The additional bridge investment will allow the fast-growing firm to expand its operations and goods, as well as create a presence in new areas such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.
Abdullah Al Othaim, CEO of Mad’a Investment, said the strategy is to invest in companies that add exceptional value through their innovative ideas to the Kingdom and the region, SmartCrowd, MENA’s first regulated real estate investment platform, will open up new investment channels to individuals looking for relatively safe methods of passive income.
The Bridge Round’s principal investor is Mad’a Investment Company, a powerful Saudi business.
TriCap Investment, a Dubai-based global investment firm, made a second investment in SmartCrowd.
The real estate crowdfunding startup was also backed by Amaana Capital, the venture capital arm of US-based NRD Capital, as well as other well-known angel investors in the region.
By giving its consumers high-quality and pre-vetted investment possibilities, SmartCrowd is leading the charge in fractional ownership of real assets in the region. Amaana Capital managing partner Aziz Hashim remarked that they are delighted to collaborate with Siddiq and Musfique in their next stage of expansion.
Suleman Soorani, director of Principal Investments at Tricap Investments, is a huge believer in SmartCrowd’s digital investing platform and the value proposition it delivers to all sorts of real estate investors and owners.
He commended SmartCrowd’s user-friendly technology platform for making real estate investment hassle-free for everyone, and is delighted to work with the creators to make SmartCrowd not just a preferred way to invest in real estate, but a preferred way to own real estate as well.
The number of investors has doubled in the past quarter, while assets under management have increased by more than 60%.
Siddiq Farid, CEO and co-founder of SmartCrowd, said the quick growth is thanks to their creative approach to property ownership, a market ready for investment, and the good economic outlook the UAE is enjoying. Dubai’s real estate transactions are at an all-time high, which is fueling their expansion.
In the meantime, he remarked, their recent bridge financing will enable them to swiftly expand to new heights and continue our aim of making alternative investing accessible to all. Historically, the average investor has been limited to traditional asset classes like stocks and bonds, unable to diversify their capital into other assets like the affluent do to maintain and grow wealth. People should build financial portfolios that can withstand the volatility of the market now more than ever.
Individual investors in SmartCrowd buy a ‘fractional’ stake in a validated rental property based on a unique 100-point screening methodology, with contributions starting at AED500.
Investors are then paid a proportional share of the rent based on their investment.
Once a property has been funded, it is acquired through a DIFC-registered special purpose vehicle (SPV), assuring a safe and secure investment opportunity.
Siddiq Farid said that SmartCrowd is a novel product for anyone wishing to get a reasonable return on a very small investment.
SmartCrowd currently has over 30,000 members on the site, with 80 percent of them based in the UAE, after 18 months of steady development despite global economic hardships caused by the epidemic. The remaining 20% are from as far as New Zealand and Australia, and they’re utilizing SmartCrowd to get a good deal on Dubai real estate.
SmartCrowd has already financed over 70 homes and completed over AED50 million in transactions. So far, the firm has distributed about AED3 million in rental revenue to investors.
Real estate investing has never been easier or more accessible thanks to the new SmartCrowd mobile app, which is now available on the iOS App Store and Google Play.