NAB invests in property investment platform BRICKX

Alison Banney 28 February 2018 NEWS

This move from NAB follows Westpac's investment in the Australian startup BRICKX in late 2017.

Popular Australian startup BRICKX has today announced an investment from NAB's corporate venture capital arm NAB Ventures as part of a multi-million dollar funding round. This latest funding follows an investment in the platform by Westpac's Reinventure fund late last year. BRICKX is an investment platform than enables retail investors to invest in part of a property, or some bricks, for just a few hundred dollars.

This ability to invest in a small part of a residential property is often referred to as fractional property investment, and is a solution for Australians looking to enter the residential property market who may not be able to afford a deposit with today's prices. BRICKX only launched to retail investors in September 2016 and already boasts over 9000 members, proving the demand for fractional property investment is there. BRICKX offers 14 properties across a number of major Australian cities in which Australians can invest in, or buy some bricks.

NAB ventures has today announced its investment in BRICKX, recognising the unique value proposition offered by the modern platform. Managing director of NAB Ventures Todd Forest said, "The aspiration for property ownership has long been the Australian dream, however buying a property often has challenges for many consumers – such as the rise in house prices in some areas and trying to save for a deposit."

“BRICKX is disrupting this journey in how it provides consumers with access to the property market and engages with them in creating a pathway to property ownership. NAB Ventures has scanned the market globally, to identify a range of companies and business models that attempt to solve for this, particularly as NAB looks to support its customers along the full home ownership journey. NAB Ventures chose BRICKX as the leading opportunity, based on its unique business model, exceptional user experience and the opportunity to leverage the platform to innovate and help more Australians with their home ownership goals," said Forest.

BRICKX CEO Anthony Millet said it was the platform's unique product offering and its ability to help Australians achieve the dream of home ownership that was a key driver for investment.

“Housing affordability continues to be a priority for Australia’s banks, so the alignment between BRICKX and NAB Ventures has a strong and unified purpose. BRICKX is expanding rapidly and this high profile and experienced group of investors will help us in our goal to assist millions of Australians to get their foot onto the property ladder," said Millet.

“The prohibitive costs and high deposits needed to gain access to the property market, has left many out in the cold. However, BRICKX has opened up the residential property asset class as an alternative investment to any of the traditional investment options. Considering the recent volatility in the cryptocurrency and stock markets, Australians are recognising the longer-term stability of property prices," he said.

Since the investment from Westpac's Reinventure fund late last year, BRICKX has reported a 25% growth in its user base.

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