This week it was announced that Social Capital Hedosophia II — a special purpose acquisition company associated with Chamath Palihapitiya — will merge with the real estate startup Opendoor, effectively taking the company public. Without going into all of the details, SPACs are kind of popular right now. They’re a way to take companies public without going through the traditional IPO process. And Chamath is clearly a believer in the approach, as he has gone ahead and reserved all of the symbols from “IPOA” to “IPOZ” on the New York Stock Exchange. $IPOB is what will be merging with Opendoor.
But SPACs are not the point of this post. The point is that I have written a lot about Opendoor over the years on this blog. (Here are those post.) And I’m pretty sure that, on a number of occasions, I have referred to it as one of if not the most promising consumer-facing real estate startup. So in my view this announcement is a pretty big deal for both the company and for the industry. As Chamath puts it in the below investment thesis, “real estate is the largest, undisrupted form of buying/selling in the US worth more than $1.6 trillion annually.” And it’s only a matter of time before that process moves online.