Chinese apartment rental platform Ziroom announced on Nov. 30 to acquire and merge with Bestbond, an operator for boutique long-term apartment rentals, amid the ongoing bankruptcy buzz in China’s apartment rental industry.
Established in 2013, Bestbond currently has 31 projects with about 5,000 rooms across China, targeting white collar workers in China located in major first-tier and second-tier cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Suzhou.
According to Ziroom, the merger and acquisition of Bestbond will boost the scale of centralized apartments, also referred to as integrated rental communities, in major cities across the nation, helping Ziroom to carry out more than 50 centralized apartment projects nationwide which target different customers as well as markets.
Due to the bankruptcy rumor of rival company Danke Apartment, Ziroom has also been questioned about whether it can survive the gloomy environment of the rental agency industry impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, the company on Nov. 17 issued a response on its official Zhihu account regarding the long-term rental conflicts between landlords and tenants, stating in bold font that “everything is fine with Ziroom and tenants can live with no worries.” The platform also claimed that its rent loan ratio is far below the limit of 30% required by the government, restricting itself from expanding its business scale through rent loan leverages.
Despite this new move for Ziroom, the platform on Nov. 20 also launched the first “ZiRuLi” in the city of Guangzhou, a rental community offering approximately 1,500 apartments equipped with shared working space, convenience stores, coffee shops, book stores and community services. Moreover, the occupancy rate of ZiRuLi reached 97% in the 500 units available for rent as of press time.