Epropservices, the parent company of Fine & Country and The Guild, has undergone a rebranding alongside the launch of a new proptech accelerator program.
Now operating under the name nurtur.group, the company’s fresh accelerator fund will be headed by former Reapit CEO Gary Barker. The fund is expected to back early-stage startups searching for seed investments with cash provided by Tosca Fund – the proptech’s major shareholder and the same backer of nurtur.group’s recent purchases Starberry, LeadPro and The Property Jungle.
According to John Cooke, CEO of the newly minted nurtur.group, companies joining the program will receive a direct route to its agent network, advice from nurtur.group’s board industry advisors and mentors, and integration into its technology platform.
“The aim of the business is to connect leading technology products to our nationwide membership network and agents, helping property professionals select the tech that works best for them within a single ecosystem that works with just one login,” he adds.
Alongside Barker, the fund will be managed by: Ben Sellers, CEO of Starberry; Iain McKenzie, CEO of The Guild and Fine & Country; two non-executive directors; Kefuffle’s Simon Whale and Andrew Stanton; and selected industry network members the company has yet to disclose.
Barker noted the accelerator program will be unique within the property industry because, rather than being outside money and experts thrusting their ideas on agents, it’s led by experienced industry figures with broad knowledge.
“We’ll be making 8–10 investments a year and one area we’ll be looking at is platforms striving to improve the conveyancing process,” he said.
As digital business models in the real estate market adapt, global proptech accelerator programs have become increasingly popular means of funding for early-stage companies looking to hit the ground running.
Philippo, a Chilean proptech platform that provides liquidity to home equity, and HomeRoom, a Kansas-based residential real estate proptech, both recently announced acceptance into the Y combinator accelerator program.
Aldar, the UAE’s biggest listed property company, unveiled the second cycle of its Scale Up program, inviting companies that are digitizing the real estate sector. Global real estate investor PGIM Real Estate revealed in November plans to launch a proptech incubator in “the next couple months.”
“Our plan is to accelerate proptech development and widen the availability of innovative digital products that will propel our business and our customers forward as the sector embraces digitalization,” Cooke said.