Swiss ICMIF member La Mobilière has announced this week that it has acquired the Flatfox real estate portal. Flatfox offers a free marketplace for real estate as well as intelligent tools for the online property rental process. With this acquisition, La Mobilière is expanding its housing offering and consolidating its position in this market.
Flatfox is one of the leading real estate platforms in Switzerland. The Zurich-based company, which employs 15 people, offers individuals and businesses a marketplace where they can post real estate ads free of charge. Flatfox also provides business customers, such as real estate agencies, with software dedicated to the online rental process. In particular, real estate companies can link their management software to the main real estate portals in Switzerland and manage all communication with tenants on a single platform. This not only results in more efficiency in the rental process, but also facilitates the ability to act proactively and thus find new tenants more quickly.
The acquisition of Flatfox is an important step in the development of the Mobilière Habitat (housing) ecosystem of businesses. The main pillars of this ecosystem include: the Scout24 Suisse SA online marketplace (a joint venture owned by Ringier and Mobilière) which includes platforms for vehicles, real estate, classifieds and insurance and finance; the Buildigo online craftsman platform which allows users to find craftsmen throughout Switzerland; and the aroov tenant portal which was launched last year by La Mobilière in collaboration with Garaio REM, a property management software company in which it has a minority stake.
Collaboration between Flatfox and aroov for the development of a complete solution
La Mobilière already has the aroov tenant portal, jointly owned with Garaio REM. Flatfox and aroov will continue to operate under their own brands. Their respective partnerships with third parties will continue or be encouraged within this open ecosystem says the mutual insurer.
“Flatfox has attractive features, a strong customer base and a team of motivated founders who will stay on board,” comments Andrea Kleiner, COO of Mobiliar. The interaction between aroov and Flatfox offers consumers interesting services. Real estate professionals, for their part, benefit from comprehensive solutions that allow them to be present to tenants at the right time with relevant offers.”
Unlike Flatfox and Aroov, whose actions focus on the tenant market, the Liiva platform focuses on homeowners. This platform, the result of an alliance between Mobilière and Raiffeisen, will be launched in summer 2021 according to the current schedule.Bernhard Mäder, CEO of Flatfox, says: “With a strong partner like La Mobilière, we can join forces with aroov to jointly tackle market prospecting and product development, with a view to exploiting full potential of the digital rental market.”
“We are delighted with the collaboration with Flatfox,” adds Matthias Frieden, Managing Director of Aroov. Each can build on their strengths and, at the same time, we can benefit from each other. Our customers stand to gain from this because they will now have an even better service. “