Venture capital firm Fifth Wall produces a bi-weekly newsletter that curates relevant news articles, summarizes recent deals and provides updates on the various portfolio companies in which they’ve invested.

Check out this week’s update, which covers tiny houses, guest room gyms and the early-stage construction tech startups to watch.

What we’re reading

  • “Meet your new landlord: Wall Street” (WSJ): How big investors — including Invitation Homes, which Brad Greiwe co-founded — have transformed suburban neighborhoods by buying up single-family homes and renting them out.
  • “Tiny houses: Big future, or big hype?” (Curbed): Whether they serve as accessory dwelling units, Airbnb rentals, vacation homes or rooms for Grandma, “tiny houses” are a trend on the (proverbial) rise, with builders and city planners taking note. And they do look pretty cool.

Interesting ideas

A selection of relevant financing and M&A activity in our sector

Deal spotlight

Redfin’s big week

After pricing its IPO higher than expected at $15 per share, Seattle-based Redfin (NASDAQ: RDFN) surged 45 percent on its first day of trading (July 28), spurred by strong year-over-year growth and bringing the online real estate broker’s market cap to over $1.7 billion.

Redfin’s 2016 revenue was $267.2 million, up from $187.3 million and $125.4 million in 2015 and 2014, respectively. Additionally, investors saw promising signs in 2016’s narrowing losses ($22.5 million in 2016 vs. $30.2 million in 2015).

The strength of Redfin’s IPO was a welcome sight to capital markets after disappointing performances by recent high-profile IPOs, such as Blue Apron and Snap Inc.

Importantly, the Redfin IPO signals the appeal of real estate tech firms to the broader market.

Redfin CEO, Glenn Kelman, has expressed his desire to have the company be the “Amazon of real estate” — a one-stop shop for everything real estate related — and Redfin has already taken steps toward this end with the new introduction of a mortgage origination platform.

This IPO is a strong indicator of things to come for other companies that amplify the built world, and we are thrilled about Redfin’s early successes.

You can learn more about Fifth Wall by visiting its website, and to subscribe to the firm’s newsletter, click here.

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