PropTech Roundup – January 2021

Already a month into 2021 and the UK PropTech space has already kicked into gear with plenty to update you on! Here’s what you need to know about UK PropTech in January 2021…

Proptech CurveBlock adds first VC firm to list of backers

CurveBlock, set for further expansion, already has the backing of 19 angel investors as well as Loyal VC, with which it has just agreed terms. The company will use blockchain technology to enable individuals to invest in property and receive payouts from every sale.

The goal is to make the traditionally exclusive world of property investment accessible to the population at large, allowing them to invest whatever amount suits them. The investor will profit each time CurveBlock builds and sells a project.

Referring to the deal with Loyal VC, co-founder Gary Woodhead said it was evident that VC firms are at last acknowledging the opportunities which exist north of the M25 and that is great news for the whole Northern Powerhouse.

What really sealed the deal, Woodhead added, was that Loyal VC has very high ethical principles and looks for startups that tackle the United Nations’ development goals. All of which match CurveBlock’s objectives to focus on environmental protection and financial inclusion.

Auctioneer’s new PropTech to benefit partner agents

Property auctioneer Pugh, with 11 offices across the UK, has brought out new bespoke technology to optimise its work with estate agents. The new platform, created to provide free technology to agents, includes a ‘partner portal’ online hub with access to training materials, videos and marketing downloads, where new properties for auction can be uploaded.

Will Thompson, Pugh associate director, explained that the firm will provide a white-label microsite to their agents so they can easily advertise the properties they have for sale at a Pugh auction. 

As the site is branded with the clients’ own colours, it is genuinely seamless and was developed to promote their brand.

Pugh has sold lots totalling over £35m at auctions on the firm’s online platform since the pandemic began last March. In 2019, the firm achieved an auction success rate of over 85pc, offering in excess of 1,000 lots for sale at its auction sites and generating more than £90m in sales for clients.

New proptech partnership promotes two-way plug-in

Lettings service Teclet has joined forces with Fixflo, the UK’s largest property management platform used by thousands of agents, to form one of the most powerful leaders in lettings and property management technology.

The software can manage tenants’ issues, monitor maintenance tasks, keep landlords updated, automate tasks for the agent or property manager and, when integrated with a client’s accounting system, provide a complete end-to-end solution that manages tasks and finance.

Teclet, 20pc owned by, combines all the various processes within lettings on one platform, including property maintenance management.

Teclet director John Evans says their integration with Fixflo enables users to create automated tasks and have full supervision over incoming, ongoing and completed work by contractors on properties they let and manage.

Simon Bushell, Sales Director at Fixflo, is pleased to see the latest integration with Teclet go live, allowing users to oversee repairs and maintenance by accessing the specialist system on Teclet’s website, which will synchronise landlord and tenant data automatically.

LeadPro buys rival to broaden client base

Pre-eminent estate agency marketing platform LeadPro has acquired rival ProVal for an undisclosed sum. The purchase signals a move towards rationalisation taking place within the busy online valuation proptech sector.

LeadPro claims the purchase will provide it with a new set of products and a ‘substantial’ number of new clients such as Gascoign Halman and Martin & Co. 

Sam Zawadzki, CEO and founder of LeadPro, says the ProVal acquisition will enable the company to generate more than 50,000 new valuation leads per month and represents another first-class product with which to underpin their operations.

Based in London, LeadPro was founded four years ago to help agents maximise their property portal leads and so far has raised £400,000 from angel investors. 

Warrington-based ProVal, established at the same time as LeadPro, offers a lead management suite and helps agents value properties. 

BlockDox’s Seedrs campaign overshoots target

The UK-based proptech BlockDox has speedily raised its initial £125,000 funding target by means of its Seeders campaign, attracting almost 50 investors so far. 

BlockDox, founded in 2015, is a data science proptech company which focuses on solving complex problems using AI and the Internet of Things (AIoT). 

The program is purchased through a B2B Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription model, which includes an upfront mobilisation fee and an annually recurring data licence fee with a minimum term.

The company says it is positioned in the ‘analytics and insights layer’, one of the most valuable of layers in the asset management ecosystem, and that they compile and interpret data using AI to deliver ‘context and meaning’ by means of their dashboard interface and unique data feed.

The funds raised will be used to promote growth and development of the BlockDox platform. The company is offering a 20pc discount during the funding round, which is due to close at the end of February.

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