By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Bayut parent company EPMG announces merger with OLX Group
Bayut parent company Emerging Markets Property Group has merged with global classifieds business OLX Group in Pakistan, Egypt, Lebanon and the UAE, it was announced on Tuesday.
The agreement includes an $150 million investment round led by OLX Group along with existing EPMG shareholders, which values EMPG at $1 billion after the transaction.
As part of the agreement, OLX Group will contribute its operations in all four markets into EPMG and will become its largest shareholder, with a 39 percent stake in the company.
In the UAE and Pakistan, both groups’ platforms will be operated by EPMG.
“EMPG has grown at a tremendous pace since its inception,” said Imran Ali Khan, CEO and co-founder of EMPG. “Our unique ability to scale using our proprietary tech has aided and enabled this expansion.
“This deal puts us one step further in our journey towards providing solutions in multiple markets to over a billion consumers around the world, expanding our classifieds"
EMPG is currently present in the GCC region with Bayut, Pakistan with Zameen, Bangladesh with Bproperty, Morocco and Tunisia with Mubawab, and Thailand with Kaidee.
After this deal, besides expanding to Egypt and Lebanon, EMPG will also operate OLX's platforms in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Oman, and the dubizzle platform in the UAE.
Commenting on the deal, Ammar Al Malik, managing director of Dubai Internet City - where Bayut and Dubizzle started - said: “Even in these exceptional times, Dubai has demonstrated its attractiveness as an international investment destination.
"Our infrastructure and business-friendly environment have created an enabling ecosystem for entrepreneurs to scale up their ventures in a community that is home to everyone from startups to Fortune 500 companies. The success of dubizzle and Bayut shows once again that the UAE’s technology sector is growing thanks to the vision of our leaders to create a knowledge-based, innovation-driven economy.”