London hosts Europe’s first property tech accelerator for startups
Property tech has got its first dedicated accelerator scheme in Europe – and London is the host.
Lots of attention has been paid recently to London’s fast-growing tech sector, and financial technology (fintech) has led the pack. It makes sense, considering the fact that London remains one of the world’s leading financial centres.
But with the London property market growing rapidly, it may not be surprising that property tech is also on the rise in the capital. In fact, a new initiative aimed at giving the sector a welcome boost has just been launched.
Faisal Butt, founder and chief executive of venture capital firm Spire Ventures and former Techstars and Oxygen associate Umesh Kumar have announced the launch of a new accelerator aimed exclusively at property tech startups.
Pi Labs, which will be based in the Second Home co-working space in trendy Shoreditch not far from the centre of London’s tech industry, will offer mentoring, investment and office space for promising property tech companies. It’s the first of its kind in Europe, and it’s testament to London’s success as a global tech hub that it is based in the heart of the capital.
The 13-week programme is designed to act as a catalyst for rapid growth among high-potential startups. It ends with a series of investor events at which angel investors, venture capitalists, corporates and private equity houses will be invited to see what the firms have been working on and consider providing them with funding.
“Through Pi Labs, we can empower prop-tech start-ups requiring space, access to capital and support and ultimately, help spawn the next wave of tech company success stories,” said Mr Butt. “We see Pi Labs as the platform that will create the next Zoopla, the next AirBnB and the next Nest.”
Property tech companies have seen rapid growth of late, with the flotation of Zoopla and online estate agents Purple Bricks raising £8 million in August.
Last month easyJet boss Stelios Haji-Ioannou raised a total of £1.42 million in crowdfunding to support the launch of his new venture, easyProperty.
There’s certainly lots of potential, and the founders of Pi Labs are hoping to replicate and even improve on the success property tech firms have already achieved.
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