EMPG, the Dubai-based unicorn that owns and operates Bayut & dubizzle in the UAE and Zameen.com in Pakistan, has announced the closing of a US$200 million investment round led by US-based growth equity fund Affinity Partners, with new funding from KCK, Acacia Partners, plus several other investors including Prosus, which maintains its stake.
The investment represents another significant milestone in EMPG’s journey as the Company establishes itself as the largest and most successful classifieds player in emerging markets, focused primarily on the MENA, South Asia and Southeast Asia regions.
The company aims to remain focused on its core markets, which are already cash-flow positive and growing sustainably. The majority of the investment would be earmarked for the UAE, the company’s largest market where it operates the market-leading Bayut and dubizzle brands.
EMPG’s popular classifieds and transactional product offering is deeply rooted in its technology platform and benefits from strong network effects. The company has invested heavily in its technology infrastructure, with its own tech centers comprising over 500 engineers. The company has said a significant part of the incoming funds will be devoted to further investment in its proprietary and highly scalable technology platform.
“With this round of investment, EMPG begins a new chapter in its success story. We are on track to double our revenue over the last 24 months while achieving an EBITDA positive position, and we look forward to continuing this strong growth trajectory,” said CEO Imran Ali Khan.
“With the successful closure of this round the company’s focus will now turn towards preparing for an IPO in the near future, which has always been part of our larger vision,” he added.
Haider Khan, Head of EMPG MENA, said the company’s flagship UAE brands Bayut and dubizzle had come together in 2020 and had greatly increased value to clients and consumers alike.
“Bayut and dubizzle have established themselves as clear leaders in the property, cars and general classifieds space since our merger in 2020,” said Khan.
“With the incoming funds, we aim to significantly invest in our tech platforms to further strengthen our product offering across the board to ensure that our users and customers are provided the best-in-class classifieds experience,” he added.
Citigroup Global Markets Limited (Citi) acted as EMPG’s exclusive financial advisor and placement agent in the transaction.