Ireland: BidX1 secures funding from Enterprise Ireland to open platform to wider property industry for the first time
BidX1, Europe’s leading digital property investment platform, has secured funding from Enterprise Ireland, following the company’s decision to offer a partnership model to other property agents. Enterprise Ireland is supporting BidX1's partnership model through its Agile Innovation Fund.
The move, announced in April when the property market had come to a standstill due to the Covid-19 lockdown, will see BidX1 partner with traditional estate agents, allowing them to avail of a digital model which has proven resilient throughout the crisis.
BidX1 has created a unique position in the market, allowing buyers and investors from around the world to complete property transactions online using technology developed in Dublin. The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the agility and resilience of the model, allowing the company to continue trading in all five markets throughout the lockdown period.
The PropTech company currently operates in the UK, Ireland, South Africa, Spain and Cyprus, with expansion into other European markets planned to meet the demand for an alternative to existing sale processes.
With a full team of software engineers based in the company’s Headquarters in Ballsbridge, BidX1 has already invested heavily in its technology since pioneering the first online property sales in Ireland in 2015. The most recent phase of development, which is nearing completion, has enhanced the platform’s multi-lingual and multi-jurisdictional architecture in advance of further international growth. Enterprise Ireland made almost €400,000 available to the company for this project, contributing to an overall investment expected to be in the region of €1m.
The firm’s announcement of a Joint Agency model in Ireland will see BidX1 team up with other estate agents who want to list properties on the digital platform and avail of the company’s global investor audience. Such a model would allow traditional agencies to harness the expertise of a market-leading digital property company and is something that BidX1 has already established in other markets.
Earlier this year, BidX1 announced a partnership with Foxtons, one of London’s leading estate agencies, which has seen the FTSE 250 company offering properties in London and the Home Counties for sale via the BidX1 digital platform. In South Africa, BidX1 has been working with Pam Golding Properties since 2018. Pam Golding is South Africa’s leading property group, with a network of 2,000 agents working in over 300 offices across the continent.
Stephen McCarthy, Founder & CEO at BidX1, commented, “We are an Irish company with international ambition, and Enterprise Ireland’s backing is an important endorsement of our work to date. The calibre of the businesses that Enterprise Ireland support speaks volumes about its commitment to supporting entrepreneurial teams and innovation; we are in good company.
“The opportunity in the European and African property markets is immense, but so is the sophistication required to take advantage of it. We have built a multi-lingual, multi-currency platform, capable of handling the complexities of varying regulatory & legal environments, allowing a global investor base to transact property from wherever they are in the world.
“Enterprise Ireland were quick to recognise the strength of our business model, and the opportunity for innovation in a traditional market. Having already benefited from its support for the most recent phase of development, we are delighted to have Enterprise Ireland’s backing on this new project to enhance our Joint Agency offering.
“We already have a number of significant partnerships with estate agencies, notably with Foxtons in the UK and Pam Golding in South Africa, but the pandemic has been a watershed moment for many traditional agencies and we’re seeing an exponential increase in demand on this front, across all markets.
“We would be delighted to partner with agents in Ireland who would like to start making the move online, combining their own expertise with the flexibility, transparency and global reach of our digital platform.”
Carol Gibbons, Manager of ICT and International Services at Enterprise Ireland added, “This year has already been an enormously challenging time for so many in business, but the remarkable efforts of companies across Ireland responding to the Covid-19 pandemic has been heartening to see. Despite challenges, Irish exporting businesses continue to be strong and resilient.
“Through the Enterprise Ireland Agile Innovation Fund, BidX1 has stepped up to develop its unique offering and strengthen the company. I hope other businesses can look to this and be motivated to examine its potential to grow with Enterprise Ireland support.
“We are so pleased to be playing a part in the growth of BidX1 and are looking forward to seeing what is next to come for the company.”
BidX1 has long championed an innovative approach to property sales, using technology to bring greater transparency and efficiency to the sale process. The platform facilitates end-to-end online property transactions, from listing to exchange of contracts. This has meant minimum disruption for potential purchasers, who can access all of the legal documents online, view properties virtually using video walk-throughs or drone footage, and submit deposits and offers through the platform. The latter is followed by digital contract exchange.
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