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REFILE-Equiem acquires British Land's property management arm as "PropTech" deals boom

Mon, 26th Apr 2021 07:01

(Corrects dateline to April 26, not April 25)

NEW YORK, April 26 (Reuters) - Equiem, an Australian firm
whose software improves communication between office building
owners and their tenants for multiple services, has acquired the
property management platform of the British Land Co Plc
, the two companies said on Monday.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

British Land, the largest UK real estate investment trust,
acquired an equity stake of less than 10% in Equiem in exchange
for the Vicinitee property management platform, a source
familiar with the deal said.

Vicinitee will be key for Equiem to capture growing demand
by landlords for technology that streamlines commercial real
estate operations and enhances the tenant experience, said
Gabrielle McMillan, the New York-based chief executive of
Equiem.

"It's a digital interface for your building that becomes a
remote control for all the things you need in a post-COVID
world," McMillan said.

The deal increases Equiem's scale to 500 buildings in
Europe, North America and Australia, expands its product line
and deepens an existing partnership with British Land, which
owns and manages prime London office assets, she said.

The acquisition is the latest flurry in "PropTech," a sphere
that in the first quarter had about 100 U.S. equity financings
totaling some $4.5 billion of investment and more than 40 M&A
transactions, according to GCA Advisors in San Francisco.

Boston-based HqO, a tenant experience operating system, two
weeks ago raised $60 million to expand its operations. Real
estate software and data firm View The Space Inc in March bought
Rise Buildings, another tenant experience operator, for about
$100 million, the Wall Street Journal said, citing sources.

Tenant experience apps initially provided tenants
information about on site or nearby food, beverage, fitness and
healthcare, among other services and have expanded into booking
flex space, conference rooms

During the pandemic the apps have become a tool for
landlords to communicate to their tenants about a building's
hygiene, air quality and other safety issues.

Property management software coordinates and keeps track of
myriad data about tenant accounts, leasing information, building
entry and security, HVAC management and maintenance workflow.
(Reporting by Herbert Lash; editing by Diane Craft)

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