UAE - SmartCrowd, one of the largest real estate crowdfunding platform in Mena region, has announced its successful exit from a Dubai Marina property investment delivering investors an impressive 39.25% total net return (rental income + capital gains) over a 17-month period, and 27.92% return on an annualised basis.

The studio apartment in Marina Bay Central, Dubai Marina, was purchased by 53 investors through the SmartCrowd platform for AED530,000 ($144,271) in February last year, and sold for AED780,000 ($212,324) this month, resulting in a 47% gross capital appreciation.

The property had generated a net income to its investors of AED74,330, representing a net annualised yield of 10.04%, compared to Dubai Marina’s market average of 6.20%, said the Abu Dhabi-headquartered Hub71 fintech company in its statement.

SmartCrowd, which is registered with DIFC and regulated by DFSA, presents a simpler, smarter way to access prime Dubai real estate, allowing everyday investors to diversify their portfolios with ease.

SmartCrowd CEO and Co-Founder Siddiq Farid said: "The real estate industry remains a tangible and stable asset class in the UAE, and as such, SmartCrowd strives to educate and empower people to invest in real estate to diversify their portfolios, starting from AED500. Our mission is to democratise access to alternative asset investment opportunities for every investor."

"In these uncertain economic times, it’s gratifying to see our vision producing results and overcoming some of the current market uncertainties. As an investor, it's difficult to time the market. As Warren Buffet says, it's not when you enter the market but rather how long you stay in the market," remarked Farid.

"We allow investors to access the real estate asset class and be patient to ride the market waves to ensure their capital is put to good use to generate returns. Investments in un-correlated assets allow you to build a strong investment portfolio that can withstand market conditions," he added.

Since its launch, the market-disrupting platform has crowdfunded more than 75 properties, valued at over AED55 million. The company has distributed more than AED3.2 million in rental income and established a strong investor base that continues to grow rapidly.

With global financial markets in complete disarray and almost all investment classes down significantly in 2022, it is prudent for investors to diversify across alternate asset classes that are less correlated with stocks, like real estate, as well as top-performing commodities like gold and oil, stated the fintech company.

SmartCrowd investor, Bruno Massera, said: "I'm extremely excited to receive the cash in my bank account from the first exit with the SmartCrowd platform. In less than 18 months, I was able to get a total return of over 39% showing that the business model can truly deliver value to the investors."

"Since my first investment in 2019, I was able to build a diversified portfolio with almost 30 properties bringing in regular rental returns. I'm a believer in the power of crowdfunding and diversification, especially in countries such as UAE with so many real estate opportunities," he added.

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