European investment group partners to help close a $100 million round in Q4 2022
BY PHILIP RUSSO OCTOBER 24, 2022 9:00 AM
Making its first foray into proptech fund investing, The Liechtenstein Group is partnering with Greensoil PropTech Ventures (GSPV) on the venture capital firm’s planned fourth-quarter closing of a $100 million fund, GSPV announced Monday.
Owned by the Princely House of Liechtenstein, the Vienna-based group is investing “a couple of million dollars” in GSPV’s PropTech Ventures Fund II, said Alexander Winkler, an investment manager at Liechtenstein Group, which has real estate holdings in the U.S. and Europe, manages a portfolio of companies, and operates globally in agriculture, forestry, renewable energy and real estate.
(And, just to get the trivia out of the way, Liechtenstein is one of the world’s smallest countries, with barely 38,000 souls tucked into 62 square miles between Switzerland and Austria.)
“We think they have a very strong team there, which is very well aligned with our values,” Winkler said of GSVP. “And we believe that they will not only deliver good returns to us, but also be a great partner for us to better understand the property and construction technology segment.
“We usually do not do fund investments,” he added. “We have a direct investment mandate only, but we made an exception in this case because we have been a real estate investor for quite some time. However, for our property and construction technology side, we’re fairly new. We want to better understand the market, get some access to it, and learn, so that we can also invest there in the future.”
The Liechtenstein Group’s investment in GSVP’s proptech fund significantly moves the needle toward its planned closing, said Gideon Soesman, co-founder and managing partner of the Toronto-based venture capital firm, which seeks to digitize and decarbonize the built environment.
“For us it’s a very substantial investment strategically and also financially,” said Soesman. “It is bringing us closer to the target we have. The Liechtenstein Group is known for taking a thoughtful, holistic approach to increasing sustainability in real estate, agriculture and other key sectors. We are pleased to work with an entity whose culture is so deeply rooted in sustainability and innovation.”
The sustainability investment theme was echoed by Constantin Liechtenstein, CEO and managing partner of the Liechtenstein Group and younger son of the ruling prince. “We chose Greensoil PropTech Ventures because its goals align with the Liechtenstein Group’s vision to make real estate more sustainable through cutting-edge technologies,” he said in a statement.
GSVP’s first proptech fund closed at $60 million, said Soesman. Since GSPV Fund II’s March 2021 launch announcement, the fund has invested in six portfolio companies, including Oxygen8, Wynd, Home365, Miru, Intelligent City, and Ivy Energy.
“We are always looking for exciting companies that will help to decarbonize and digitalize the built environment,” said Soesman. “And we’re doing it together with LPs, most of whom are very strategic in this field, which makes us so excited about having the Liechtenstein Group on board, because they themselves have a large asset of real estate.”
Gaining knowledge of the proptech sector through the actual testing of various technologies within its real estate holdings is one of two important goals for the Liechtenstein Group, said Winkler.
“Bringing the sustainability concepts to real estate is critical for us and to the family,” said Winkler. “And then there’s of course a second side to that: we also want to do transactions in the space. We want to select great companies that will have a positive impact on the entire real estate world, so to speak. In that regard, we hope that we can generate deal flow and find interesting projects to look at.”
Philip Russo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.