Singapore headquartered PropertyGuru, Asia’s leading online property group, has made major changes to its leadership position.
The group has appointed Hari Krishnan, former chief business officer, as the chief executive officer while Steve Melhuish, the former CEO, will be acting as a vice chairman. As vice-chaiman, Melhuish will focus on the company’s longer-term strategy.
The changes are aimed to enable PropertyGuru to focus on long term strategy and business growth, the company announced.
Melhuish and Jani Rautiainen founded PropertyGuru in 2006. The portal currently has 1.3 million listings of properties from 13 countries with 16 million registered buyers.
The group covers Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. It received an investment of S$175 million from TPG, Emtek Group and Square Peg Capital in 2015.
The leadership-level transition was initiated two years ago by the founders and Krishnan was identified as a potential CEO successor since his appointment as a president and CBO in January 2016. He was earlier with LinkedIn as the vice-president for Asia Pacific & Japan.
“We’re on track to return to profitability next year, after five years of aggressive investment in regional expansion, product innovation, marketing, and developing a world-class leadership team. As such, Jani and I felt that now was the right time to pass the baton,” said Melhuish, after about nine years acting as a CEO of PropertyGuru, overseeing over 420 staff.
He said their group is in a “very strong position today,” holding a number one position in their core markets.
The group to date has handled over S$15 billion worth of property transactions per annum for its 35,000 real estate developer and agents.
The new CEO will be focusing on real consumer needs in the market while work closely with the team, customers and consumers.
“I am excited to lead the Company’s next phase of growth, working with our talented team to bring more exciting innovations to property seekers and to deliver more value to our customers,” said Krishnan.
Lewis Ng, managing director for the Group’s Singapore operations, will take charge as CBO following Krishnan’s elevation.
Rautiainen, managing director and board member of PropertyGuru Group will also be taking the new Executive Director role to support the long-term business development.