Real estate crowdfunding continues its course and Walliance focuses on the United States.

For a decade now it has been possible to invest in real estate from your smartphone, digitally and totally dematerialized. The accessibility of investments in the real economy has never been easier and more transparent, which is why the real estate crowdinvesting sector continues to record very promising growth figures across Europe. Giacomo Bertoldi, CEO of Walliance, explains:

Walliance is a digital platform that offers investments in the real estate market, allowing you to invest in development operations proposed by the main market players looking for alternative financing.

How does investing through your platform work?

To make an investment through Walliance, simply register on the Portal – website or iOS and Android application – and validate your profile by carrying out a biometric activation process (used by major banking and financial institutions) to verify the identity of our customers and prevent potential risks of money laundering, in order to maximize the level of security and avoid online fraud attempts. Once his profile is completed, the user can invest in the project available on the platform, provided, of course, that he likes it and, above all, that it matches his portfolio diversification needs – taking into account both financial criteria, such as the estimated yield or duration, the qualitative criteria relating to the real estate transaction and to the company entrusted with the development. After subscribing to the investment (which requires a maximum of 4 clicks!), The investor will only have to make a simple transfer! There is no wallet to load and therefore no amount will have to be loaded before choosing the investment, unlike many other platforms that use this system.

So, once the investment is made, what happens? LDoes the user wait for the end of the real estate transaction, which can last for example one or two years?

For the duration of thereal estate transaction, investors can keep abreast of the status ofstate of progress of the project in which they decide to invest in different ways. In fact, each project has a section in its fact sheet called Update, where a quarterly report is published summarizing the status quo of the project (visible only to those who have joined the project). The report contains information that is sent to Walliance by introducing companies in the weeks leading up to publication so that investors can keep up to date on a regular basis. In addition, we have created a question and answer section where investors can interact directly with the real estate development operator.

Let’s say therefore that the investor, in addition to always being informed and aware of the evolution of his investment, can also actively participate in the search for the information he needs. He does not silently wait for his return for one or more years! Finally, from the Dashboard section of the Personal Space, each investor can monitor all their investments and control their cash flow.

How are the real estate transactions presented on the platform selected?

In Walliance, we carry out a very careful analysis of the real estate projects that are proposed to us. In fact, we have developed an internal procedure for the analysis of the operator and the real estate project (according to current legislation and regulations) which aims to reduce the potential risks associated with the investment.

All real estate projects financed through the platform must respect certain parameters that affect everythingfirst of all, the Offeror, or the operator in charge of the transaction, whose background is analyzed and taken into consideration in the evaluation (in order to verify the existence of disputes in progress or other relevant elements), as well as his experience in real estate sector and, in particular, in projects similar to the one proposed. We also ask for references obtained fromcreditor organizations, investors or other interested parties of the operator. It is also very important to analyze the market in which the real estate project fits: we study the demographic data (such as total population, average income, number of annual transactions, etc.), as well as the economic trend of the real estate market in this specification. area, taking into account the trend of sales prices and the trend of transactions, examining several comparables for an estimate as accurate as possible.

Other key factors for us are the quality of the intervention and the proposed investment agreement, which provides that the amount of the loan must be between € 1,000,000 and € 5,000,000 (depending on the European country in which it is established. the offering company), that the investment must produce a minimum gross annual return equal to 10% of the capital raised and that the duration of the real estate transaction must be between 6 and 30 months.

From this year, our analysis process also takes into account the ESG criteria, which concern the environmental, social and governance impacts affecting the developing company. In this way, investors can direct their capital towards activities that, in addition to generating value in economic terms, do not compromise the ability of resources to generate value over time and the ability of future generations to satisfy their needs.

Where and how many years has the platform been operational?

Walliance was founded in Trento, Italy, in 2017 and was the first equity crowdfunding platform to receive CONSOB authorization to raise risk capital for real estate projects online. In January 2020 Walliance became the first Italian portal to be authorized in another European country, registering with Orias as a CIP (crowdfunding investment adviser) under the supervision of the AMF. Today we are active in Italy and France, but as soon as the ECSP (European Crowdfunding Service Providers) Regulation comes into force, we will be ready to land in many other countries in Europe and we hope to arrive in the United States soon. also, where we have already raised funds for two projects, one in Brooklyn and the other in Miami.

We know that in Italy, with almost 60 million euros raised in 2021, you have positioned yourself as a leading platform in the market, but how did you face the challenge of launching in another country, such as France, where the market is very different? from the Italian market, or even more mature?

Yes, in Italy, in 2021 we reached a market share of 70% and, already, in the Real Estate Crowdfunding Report 2020, drawn up by the prestigious Politecnico di Milano, Walliance was among the top 23 European portals (operating in both with the model equity and debt crowdfunding) as the first Italian platform. But certain of our advantageous position on the – if you can say so – “local” market, we have tried as much as possible not to make the mistake of expecting the same value proposition, or the same communication, to operate in such a different market and as mature as the French market. It was like starting from scratch, both in terms of investment product and brand.

2021 was a very intense year for us and very busy in terms of activities: we launched a new service dedicated to private investors and HNWIs (called Première); we launched the first version of our Application (launched in January 2022); we successfully presented the first cross-border campaign in Europe, which involved Italian and French investors, and many other projects. But despite this, we never made the mistake of copy paste what we do and what is good for our country in another. Our propensity for internationality has certainly helped us a lot in this regard: we have had a trilingual platform for many years, we have investors from 33 countries around the world, we have a work team made up of several multilingual and bilingual people by birth, and we promote exchanges between our offices in Milan, Paris and Trento for at least one month a year.

What will your next challenges be?

To understand what the challenges will be, I believe we must always start from the means available to face them. As I said, 2021 was a year full of activities for us, but also of great satisfaction from the point of view of the figures and people at the head of the company. In fact, the General Assembly approved the 2021 financial statements with revenues up to 1.82 million euros (against 913 thousand euros pp) and a net equity position that reached 2.94 million euros (against 1.05 million euros pp) .

In addition to these positive results, the Shareholders’ Meeting also renewed the management of the company and appointed two new members of the Board of Directors: Valeria Falcone, Head of Value Add Investing Europe at Baring, and Mirko Tironi, Senior Partner of HOPE Sicaf. . The new Board of Directors will be essential to allow us to lead the company in its international expansion process (with a focus on France, Spain and the United States) and to achieve the growth objectives in terms of volume of investments that we have set ourselves. for the next three years, thanks to an expansion of our business also towards new classes of real estate assets: from logistics, which drove the entire sector in 2021, to alternatives, passing through the student housing sector, which recorded numerous operations in the main European cities, and which, in our opinion, will have more and more space between our investments.

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