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New JLL Spark fund invests in a tech-led future

JLL Spark is creating a $100 million global venture fund to invest in cutting-edge start-ups that have the potential to transform the real estate industry through technology-based innovation.

The fund focuses on start-ups that are leveraging technology to improve all aspects of real estate from developing and managing to leasing and investing while enhancing the experience of those who occupy it. Start-ups with technology solutions that can help JLL’s investor and occupier clients, or that can be used by its business lines to better deliver their services are of particular interest.

For entrepreneurs, the global venture fund offers the opportunity to be connected with JLL’s experts as well as clients for both knowledge sharing and technology use.

"Having been entrepreneurs ourselves, we know how hard it is to bring a new product to market, especially in an industry that has been slow to adopt new technology. That’s why our goal is to partner with entrepreneurs, and help them tap into the resources of JLL’s business lines so they can succeed in rapidly growing their companies while we also create value for JLL’s clients."

Mihir Shah, Co-CEO at JLL Spark

The new fund will focus on seed and Series A investments, as well as select later stage rounds. Typical investment size will range from a few hundred thousand to several million dollars.

Proptech is one of the fast-evolving areas of real estate with investments in real estate technology companies growing by 25 percent in 2017 to $3.4 billion. However, while more entrepreneurs are now building proptech companies, distribution is often a challenge with long sales and deployment cycles.

JLL Spark, a JLL division run by former Silicon Valley entrepreneurs Mihir Shah and Yishai Lerner, was set up in 2017 to identify and incubate proptech start-ups with the potential to drive the future of real estate.

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