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Propshop: Revolutionising real estate investment with fractional ownership

Propshop is leveraging blockchain technology to offer fractional ownership opportunities in Dubai’s booming real estate market

Propshop: Revolutionising real estate investment with fractional ownership
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Propshop, a proptech firm in the UAE, is revolutionising the investment landscape by introducing fractional ownership in Dubai’s real estate sector. This innovative platform makes it possible for a global audience to invest in the booming market, providing access to lucrative opportunities previously out of reach for many.

Sarah Sajwani, an Emirati entrepreneur with a background in architecture, and Christian Frost Jensen, a former senior commercial advisor for Denmark’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and serial entrepreneur, have joined forces to make investing in real estate more accessible and inclusive. Their vision is to revolutionise the real estate investment industry and create opportunities for a wider range of investors.

“We observed significant barriers that kept many people from investing in real estate—high costs, complex liquidation processes, and accessibility issues. We launched Propshop, a platform where fractional ownership meets blockchain technology and kicked off with our first tokenised investment buy-in in March. Propshop’s vision is to be a one-stop shop for real estate and deliver real estate brokerage services for off-plan, secondary market, commercial, rent and property management, and we will soon launch a one-of-a-kind development and architecture verticals. Our mission is to bring into Propshop the best practices from all over the globe,” explains Sarah Sajwani, CEO and Founder of Propshop.

How does Propshop work?

Propshop’s platform utilises blockchain technology to tokenise premium real estate investments, making them accessible to all investors. By dividing properties into digital shares, individuals can purchase fractional ownership with a low entry cost, eliminating geographical barriers and providing liquidity for off-plan opportunities. Investors can trade tokens 24/7, creating a more inclusive and flexible investment experience.

“Token holders can also benefit from additional perks, such as royalties and a landlord program, which provide passive income streams and other forms of return on investment. Ultimately, Propshop simplifies real estate investing and makes it as flexible as trading stocks, with the added benefit of real-world asset backing,” says Sajwani.

Moreover, Propshop has addressed common investor constraints like high entry prices, illiquidity, and limited jurisdictions by pioneering a tokenised ownership model. Through detailed market analysis, Propshop can identify high-potential properties across the UAE, allowing a broader range of investors to participate in real estate investment.

Benefits and drawbacks of fractional ownership

According to Sajwani, fractional ownership offers several benefits to investors, including reduced initial investment requirements, risk diversification, and relief from direct management responsibilities. This model also democratises access to real estate investments and makes it an attractive option for a broader base of investors seeking passive income and portfolio diversification.

“However, fractional ownership also entails challenges such as less control over property decisions, complexities in selling shares, and reliance on management entity performance. Moreover, achieving consensus among co-owners on property upgrades or sales timing can be challenging. Propshop addresses these with streamlined processes and enhanced transparency, ensuring smooth operations and decision-making,” mentions Sajwani.

An innovative approach 

In the global real estate market, trends are focused on integrating IoT, VR, and AR technologies for improved buying and viewing experiences. Additionally, blockchain technology is being explored for its potential to streamline transactions and enhance security and transparency in property dealings.

“Locally in the UAE, the real estate sector is witnessing its own digital revolution, spurred by the government’s support for smart city initiatives. These initiatives are complemented by the introduction of smart contracts and blockchain registrations, which are set to increase efficiency and reduce transaction times significantly. This technological adoption not only positions the UAE as a leader in real estate innovation but also attracts international investors looking for dynamic and secure markets. However, broader adoption is often slowed by stringent regulations and limited awareness, as well as perceived inaccessibility for the younger generation and those with lower purchasing power,” believes Sajwani.

Efforts to promote Emiratisation and legislative reforms aimed at attracting foreign investment, such as long-term visas for property investors and retirement visas for expatriates, are reshaping the real estate landscape. “Propshop is capitalising on these developments by implementing cutting-edge technology that aligns with these changes, ensuring that they not only meet the current demands of the market but also drive future innovation in the sector,” says Sajwani.

What does the future behold? 

Propshop’s launch saw a complete subscription within the first 24 hours, a testament to the market’s readiness for a modernised approach to real estate investment. Hence, as a nation renowned for its innovative and forward-thinking vision, the future of Propshop and the proptech sector holds immense promise, poised for substantial growth and continued innovation.

“Our goal for Propshop is for it to be positioned at the forefront of transforming how individuals and entities invest in real estate, making it more accessible, flexible, and efficient. As the UAE continues to embrace digital transformation and sustainable development, we will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of real estate investments by leveraging cutting-edge technologies like blockchain, AI, and IoT to offer more transparent, secure, and user-friendly investment platforms,” concludes Sajwani.