City Developments takes stake in Chinese apartment rental platform

George Sell George Sell Uploaded 06 September 2016


Singapore: Real estate giant City Developments (CDL) is investing £11 million in a 20 per cent stake in Chinese online apartment rental platform Mamahome.

Mamahome is a "one-stop solution" for both apartment owners and rental customers, said CDL when announcing the deal.

Home owners of CDL properties in China will be able to list their apartments on the Mamahome platform, which provides a booking website, online management software and other services, including housekeeping, renovation, 24-hour concierge and call centre.  It also provides management for its own brands of serviced apartments - Suisse Place, Locca and Login.

"Mamahome caters to the rapidly growing demand for mid- to long-term leasing from leisure travellers to business executives on assignments and postings," CDL said.

More than 100,000 apartments are listed on the site, spanning more than 20 cities in China. Over 75 per cent of these apartments are in key cities, including Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou.

After CDL's investment, mamahome will be held jointly by founder Shanghai Chongfu (56 per cent), financial services firm E-House Capital (24 per cent) and the balance by CDL China.

"Our partnership with mamahome provides an immediate entry into a fast-growing sector... It will contribute to future long-term recurring income streams to CDL," Mr Mark Yip, CDL chief marketing officer and CDL China chief executive, said in a statement.

The move follows Ascott's partnership with Tujia, which has been described as "China's Airbnb".

"Clearly, both developers are trying to embrace technological changes in the real estate industry," said Wong Yew Kiang, senior research analyst at CLSA. "While it's difficult at this point to quantify such moves in terms of expected earnings, it also would not be the right strategy to completely reject these changes."


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