What a difference a decade makes. Ten years ago, commercial real estate was a laggard in advanced tech adoption, content to make do with paper-based processes and back-of-the-envelope forecasts and projections. That world is long gone, fortunately, and in its place is a sector that is robust with industry-specific venture capital and an array of offerings ranging from artificial intelligence to 3D virtual tools.
It is worthwhile to occasionally ponder how we got here, if only because such musings facilitate even more advances. Some will say that CRE embraced tech when its people finally felt comfortable giving up the old ways of doing business. We disagree with that notion. Our belief is that CRE took longer to embrace technology than other industries because the technology itself was harder to customize for our space. It was when smart, visionary and entrepreneurial-minded men and women pushed through the complexities to deliver CRE-specific software products and platforms that the disruption began. It didn’t take much buy-in on the part of the industry—it was ready to go.
On the following pages you will find some of those men and women who solved the puzzle for us and brought the CRE industry on par with fintech and consumer technology.
Design by Roberto Jiménez/ALM • Lead photo by Shutterstock.com
GARY S. BRANDEIS • VERTALO
With more than 30 years of industry experience, Gary Brandeis has assisted major companies in integrating technological advances since the dot com days. During his career, he has led numerous prop tech companies, served as the principal partner in four real estate investment funds and founded the real estate technology companies, PropertyLogic LLC and iBuilding. Continually seeking innovative opportunities to apply to real estate, Brandeis remains at the forefront of technology improvements within the field. He currently serves as the president of Vertalo Real Estate, where he bridges and applies client’s real estate offerings to the company’s asset agnostic platform in order to issue digital, programmable equity. Within his role, Brandeis structures and closes deals related to the firm’s technology, while building out real estate specific functionality on the firm’s platform. Thoroughly understanding requirements for effective platforms, he continues to utilize his creative, thoughtful mindset as a consummate entrepreneur.
TIM CURRAN • BUILDING ENGINES
Since being appointed to his current role of Building Engines’ CEO in 2017, Tim Curran has proven influential by developing the company’s growth strategy and vision, and propelling the firm forward as a reliable platform for building operations. Under Curran’s leadership, the firm delivers technology to address the industry’s needs. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Curran spearheaded a project to deliver free access to critical building operations software in effort to support tenants. More recently, he led the release of the company’s new building operations software platform, Prism, to improve users’ net operating income and address all elements of building operations through a single, comprehensive interface. In addition to securing infusions of capital and engraining his values of trust, integrity and transparency in the company’s platform, Curran serves as a board director, advisor and investor for more than a dozen software start-ups.
OLI FARAGO • COYOTE SOFTWARE
While previously serving at the chief technology officer of M7 Real Estate, Oli Farago created software which scaled the company to $9.3 billion in assets under management and led to the origination of Coyote Software, as its own business from M7’s proprietary asset management software. As the co-founder and CEO of Coyote Software, Farago has led the real estate asset management platform to amass more than $300 billion of assets under management on its platform since 2017. As a global PropTech expert, Farago serves as the driving force behind the technologies that power digital CRE firms. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Farago and his team have added numerous purpose-built functionalities to the platform to better serve the changing needs of clients. In addition to providing companies with the data-driven software needed to overcome a myriad of challenges, Farago also serves on the boards of several prominent PropTech organizations, internationally.
Empowering Berkadia’s producers to effectively advise clients on how to best make investment decisions, Neda Fields leads the research efforts in developing cutting-edge solutions as product manager for Berkadia’s data tools platform. Through expansive data intelligence, analytics and actionable insights, Fields develops unique tools that assist investors in finding the best deals. Orchestrating data from property fundamentals and demographics into a visual interface, Fields is able to visualize the psychology of how people live and offer a targeted, customizable investment analysis through an efficient platform. Using creative strategies to roll-out her software, Fields is able to continually reach a diverse user base with varying degrees of technology aptitude. Driving the efforts to innovate Berkadia’s suite of technology tools, Fields has assisted in winning numerous large portfolio deals through the use of data. Her drive and work have evolved Berkadia’s production network into tech-enabled advisors for clients.
ZANDER GERONIMOS • METAPROP
Continuously building relationships and supporting key players across the field, Zander Geronimos has excelled in his career by acting as the main link between established real estate firms and the emerging PropTech community. As the head of strategic partnerships and business development at MetaProp, Geronimos works to build the future of commercial real estate by partnering with innovative-minded investors to focus on software and technology-enabled services, in effort to rethink and improve aspects of the global industry. Geronimos additionally mentors numerous PropTech start-ups; providing connections, building strong sales strategies and scaling operations. With an in-depth understanding of the start-up community’s future technologies, he is able to assist in revolutionizing the space. Furthermore, Geronimos speaks on various industry panels, and he founded the University of Virginia Alumni in Real Estate networking group, which boasts more than 700 members today.
MICHAEL GREEBY • WORK.SHOP
Unsatisfied with traditional and inefficient processes within commercial real estate, Michael Greeby challenges the norms and aims to provide new solutions to common issues within the industry. A visionary within the field of retail development, Greeby serves as the CEO of the boutique owner’s representative and technology firm, work.shop. Seeking easily adoptable solutions and working to constantly improve the company’s products, Greeby guides the firm to partner with entrepreneurial clients to create software and deliver services in effort to streamline the retail leasing and tenant space delivery process. He successfully created the online retail information platform, Digital Design Criteria Manual and two lightweight scheduling apps for leasing, design and construction, as well as Status Plan, a comprehensive app to manage the entire workflow process. A truly hands-on leader, Greeby remains intimately involved with every aspect of the company’s operations, while continuing to launch revolutionary advancements within the field.
MIKE A. HARGRAVE • REVISTA
Highly-regarded within both the senior housing and healthcare real estate sectors, Mike Hargrave has successfully developed prominent products during his career that are widely used by investors and brokers within the industry. Initially brought on at National Investment Center for the Seniors Housing and Care Industry in 2005 to develop and lead the NIC MAP data and analysis service, as the first ever real estate data firm dedicated to the senior housing and care industry, Hargrave grew the concept to become the sector’s leading data provider. In 2013, Hargrave, alongside his partners, launched Revista, a national data service with property-level information, focused on hospital and medical office assets. As principal of the firm, Hargrave recently rolled out a new, robust version of the Revista data and analysis service. Further serving the industry, Hargrave also participates as a frequent keynote speaker on the subject.
JOSH D. HERRENKOHL • FTI CONSULTING INC.
As a “innovation connector” and a “real estate futurist,” Josh Herrenkohl works to identify needs and gaps within the industry, while facilitating relationships among investors, developers and users of technology. Herrenkohl assists well-known industry stakeholders in navigating technology and innovation challenges surrounding the built environment and helps them to better understand various operating models and navigate the quickly evolving business environment. Well-respected within the PropTech community and active within the VC community, Herrenkohl connects the technology ecosystem of interdependent players, in effort to introduce new software as an advisor and help technology companies refine their strategies for future success. Focusing on the data challenges of the real estate industry, he pushes the envelope by looking outside of the industry for solutions in order to conceptualize effective delivery of automated processes. He defines practical solutions based on fact, reality and available technologies, as senior managing director and business transformation leader of FTI Consulting’s real estate solutions practice.
During his more than 20-year industry career at the helm of numerous technology enterprises, serial entrepreneur, Brian Higgins founded the privately-owned technology company, Aditum in 2014, upon selling his previous venture, the private wireless internet service, ForePoint Networks. As CEO, Higgins launched Aditum as a competitive service provider to fill a void in the multi-tenant connectivity space. He leads the platform to offer a hybrid-cloud solution; enabling owners to fully equip their multi-tenant properties with broadband infrastructure for better connectivity in the digital future. Addressing residents and tenants demands, while accommodating a variety of smart devices and systems, Higgins works with business and solution partners in order to assist customers and improve both the physical structure and internal technologies of properties. Under Higgins’ direction, Aditum has emerged as a leading platform; delivering double-digit growth for a sixth consecutive year.
PATRICK E. KLEIN • ESSEX PROPERTY TRUST
With combined knowledge from experience across each sector, Patrick Klein has applied his learnings to create an optimal model for future success as EVP and chief technology officer at Essex Property Trust. Over the past several years, Klein has introduced innovation and new technologies across the firm’s portfolio as a leader of cross functional teams. During his tenure with the firm, he has transformed the business from a paper-reliant operating model to fully mobile-enabled, electronic processes. Responsible for evaluating new and existing business operations and processes, while offering thoughtful technology solutions, Klein has additionally introduced change management and program management at the firm in effort to ensure business outcomes are ultimately met and/or exceeded. In addition to implementing cloud services at the firm, minimizing its existing data center footprint and streamlining office efficiency tools, Klein also serves on several real estate advisory boards.
STEVE KURITZ • KROLL BOND RATING AGENCY
Paving the way for CMBS surveillance research and analytics, Steve Kuritz has developed industry-first products and platforms aimed to support CMBS investors. A founding member of Realpoint, an online surveillance platform for the CMBS market, Kuritz led countless achievements for the company for 13 years, before joining Kroll Bond Rating Agency in 2013 to spearhead the KBRA Credit Profile, which he has grown to become a trusted, industry leading service. Developing an entirely new research report and web interface, Kuritz has evolved the platform into an essential credit monitoring service for CRE securitizations and loan-level analysis. As senior managing director, he establishes partnerships for KCP integration, expands offerings and ensures topical and timely research on credit events effecting the industry. Earlier this year, Kuritz was additionally named the head of KBRA analytics, where he will oversee numerous divisions and all subscription-based tools.
GABRIELLE MCMILLAN • EQUIEM
As one of few female C-suite executives in the PropTech field, Gabrielle McMillan has proven to be a pioneer within the space. Founding Equiem in 2011 as a property technology solution in Australia, CEO, McMillan has grown the platform to be a widely-adopted, global leader in tenant experience. Empowering commercial landlords to make informed decisions, McMillan leads Equiem to offer data-driven tools and analytics. Driving the platform’s innovation, McMillan has rolled out the technology across more than 215 properties and more than 175,000 users, worldwide. She has cultivated a team of more than 230 experts, led the company’s recent funding round and guided the platform to become the first coast-to-coast commercial tenant experience technology provider in the US. More recently, McMillan transformed the company’s offerings to better serve clients during the COVID-19 pandemic. Since March 2020, the platform footprint has grown by 100% in the US alone and seen an 80% increase in its US user base.
NATALIA MYKHAYLOVA • WEAVAIR
With a PhD in chemical engineering and vast experience in data processing, sensor and IoT product manufacturing and algorithm development, Natalia Mykhaylova has launched various companies globally, and developed novel devices and adaptable networks to target major unmet needs. Aiming to promote sustainable infrastructure and communities by monitoring air distribution systems through proactive insights, Mykhaylova founded the start-up PropTech company, WeavAir, which develops sensor modules to improve indoor air quality and energy efficiency of HVAC systems. Leading product development from concept to scale as CEO, Mykhaylova strives to improve the built environment while addressing responsible consumption. Under Mykhaylova’s direction, WeavAir helps operators save up to 60% of energy and 30% in operation and maintenance costs. She recently developed new sensor technology to detect the spread of bacteria and track space occupancy inside buildings. Mykhaylova continues to expand operations globally while developing new technologies, data-driven solutions and predictive software to accurately measure metrics.
DAN PALLONE • SS&C TECHNOLOGIES
With extensive experience in finance, operations and investment risk, Dan Pallone serves as an active participant and contributor within the commercial real estate lending space. Pallone joined SS&C Technologies in 2015 and has since built its CRE lending outsourcing practice; successfully adding more than 30 clients to the company within the past three years. As VP of loan solutions, Pallone oversees and leads client relationship management, operations, accounting and reporting services for SS&C’s mortgage REIT and mortgage loan client base. He remains ahead of the curve regarding industry trends and regulations in order to lead client engagement and discussions within and outside of the company. He leads workshops and panels at SS&C’s annual client conference, he serves as a frequent speaker on the Mortgage Bankers Association’s technology panels, and he guest lectures at Baruch College in New York City on the nuances of REITS.
DAWN H. PFAFF • STATE LISTINGS INC., PARENT COMPANY OF MY STATE MLS AND NY STATE MLS
Aiming to fill a void in the technology market and offer agents and brokers their own statewide MLS with streamlined listing options, ownership of data and various customized tools, Dawn Pfaff founded State Listings Inc. in 2009 for the state of New York. In response to nationwide demand, she expanded the technology platform to My State MLS in 2015. The platform now covers the entire nation with more than 50,00 members, as one of the largest MLS platforms in the US. As president and CEO, Pfaff leads the platform to offer a suite of custom solutions, educational services and webinars as a resource for the industry. She created the platform’s proprietary MLS software and a RESO web API to deliver all property listings electronically, while continuing to seek ways to improve the software and service members. Committed to educating and supporting the industry, Pfaff leads the platform to assist agents and brokers in navigating new restrictions, rules and regulations.
RYAN P. TURNER • REFINERE
With 15 years of experience in commercial real estate brokerage, upon closing his first commercial transaction at the age of 19, Ryan Turner has developed a keen sense for corporate occupiers’ needs. Turning his deep understanding into a first-of-its-kind solution, Turner founded the single-source SaaS solution for corporate real estate teams and workplace strategists, RefineRE. Creating a business model that caters to user challenges and equips corporate teams with software and unbiased information needed to make smarter, faster, data-driven decisions, Turner has developed a true end-user’s solution that improves the way deals are done. While guiding the company’s direction and running macro-level operations as CEO, Turner allows his team to thrive and innovate and remains focused on staying ahead of the competition. He has scaled the business exponentially; expanding its client base and geographic footprint globally, while growing the platform’s revenue substantially in its current third year.
Commencing his career at CA Ventures as a leasing manager for one of the firm’s very first assets, Mark Zikra constantly sought out ways to streamline operations and solve inefficiencies through the use of technology. Now as VP of innovation for the firm, Zikra continues to seek cutting-edge technology to enhance the lives of residents, the value of assets and the return for investors. An integral part in shifting the industry from segmented property technology to cohesive, integrated smart buildings, Zikra explores new and emerging products and services, and aligns the firm with technology companies to improve operations and position properties for the future. As the sole interface with general contractors and vendors to ensure successful developments and high-quality resident-facing technology, Zikra notably created the firm’s master specification guidelines for all technology across new development projects.
BHAKTA CAPITAL LLC
Aiming to identify and uncover hidden, under-the-radar markets, ripe for investing in franchised hospitality assets, Bhakta Capital LLC strives to chase yield in resilient, local niche markets by leveraging big data. Utilizing private and public data sources to underwrite every possible micro-region nationally in order to uncover relevant opportunities and identify key sites of local operators and owners, Bhakta Capital works to place an institutional lens on such markets for upper-midscale branded hotel assets. The company combines its proprietary software and various data sets to run queries, powered by AI and machine learning, on specific micro-market dynamics in effort to obtain an understanding of the areas and implement institutional capital. Through its technology, Bhakta Capital has ranked more than 950 secondary and tertiary markets throughout 11 Western states. With the goal to deliver superior, risk-adjusted returns across markets, the company utilizes its extensive hospitality operations and data science experience to execute on compelling opportunities and effectively acquire, invest in and operate hotel assets. The company consistently delivers strong returns by maintaining financial discipline and operational best practices that withstand market cycles.
Making sense of buildings’ complex ecosystems, Bractlet evaluates the impacts of changing environmental conditions and economic trends to uncover value and inefficiencies at scale. Through its Intelligence Platform™, Bractlet drives economic value, creates better work environments and mitigates climate change by offering a holistic, software and intelligence solution with tiered products for its customers. Providing owners and property teams with powerful building performance monitoring, investment decision making and ESG reporting solutions, Bractlet digitally collects, processes and stores utility and weather data and is additionally able to create a Digital Energy Twin of a building to predict energy consumption with 98% accuracy. The company’s premium product also offers tools to support and streamline project implementations and ensure investments returns are achieved. Founded in 2012, the platform has been used to evaluate more than 100 office buildings; encompassing more than 35 million square feet of space. Improving tenant comfort and safety, while reducing energy and maintenance expenses, Bractlet’s technology additionally assists in analyzing space utilization for lease negotiations and annual budgeting.
Addressing the barriers and challenges of the highly-illiquid asset class of commercial real estate, Cadre leverages technology to provide a platform for qualified individuals to invest in high-quality assets that are traditionally limited to institutional investors. Democratizing access to wealth, paving the way for more individuals to invest and leveling the playing field within the industry, Cadre has achieved major breakthroughs by offering an accessible platform for first-time investors, and lowering the required minimum to invest on the platform. Simplifying and automating the acquisition process, Cadre’s Secondary Market platform offers a marketplace where buyers and sellers can transact and access documents, reports, statements and insights into properties. Cadre’s portfolio management platform additionally offers rapid, consistent analytics, through more than 500 operational metrics, for operators to drive strong performance and identify sources of risk at each property. Focused on innovations, the company recently launched a cash deposit account, which provides investors with a 3% reward on an FDIC-insured bank account with the company. In 2019, the company reached the milestone of returning more than $100 million to investors on the platform. Cadre’s strong returns and innovations have led to more than 25,000 registered accounts on the platform.
Solving the industry challenge of absorbing and connecting the immense volume of data within commercial real estate, Cherre has generated a comprehensive model to assess the entire commercial real estate ecosystem. As a leading real estate data management platform, Cherre’s greatest accomplishment encompasses building its proprietary and patented knowledge graph at the center of its platform, which enables customers to connect all types of real estate datasets. Cherre customers are able to analyze and predict the behavior of all players in the industry, from private homeowners and corporate owners to large banks and insurance companies, and instantly explore their connected data for immediate and actionable insight. Leveraging machine learning and advanced natural language processing, Cherre‘s knowledge graph is able to clean the incoming data to connect sources that are not typically connectable in real time. With 500 million nodes and more than 1.5 billion edges, the comprehensive mapped knowledge graph of the built world allows for the faster and easier ability to ingest, standardize, resolve and connect any dataset.
Launched in 2018, Cohesion has reached a global scale within a matter of two years as a leading intelligent buildings platform. Providing a connected tenant, operator and owner platform for commercial real estate, Cohesion presents autonomous building technology and advanced building intelligence capabilities, which unlock more flexible and data-enabled properties. Through actionable insights, connected building systems and enhanced tenant experiences, the company empowers real estate owners by increasing portfolio value. Cohesion’s web- and mobile-based integrated building app offers tenants day-to-day benefits such as touchless entry, indoor air quality transparency and communication tools. The cutting-edge, converged IoT platform also allows for amenity reservations, vendor approvals, service requests, waiver signing, fault detection and more in effort to benefit all stakeholders through its software. As a leader within the PropTech industry, Cohesion continues to deliver value through holistic data by enabling buildings to reduce costs, exceed sustainability goals and become smarter. Showcasing rapid growth, Cohesion has contracted nearly nine million square feet worth of class-A building projects since inception, and within the past 12 months, the company has doubled in size.
THE COLLIERS PROPTECH ACCELERATOR POWERED BY TECHSTARS
An industry-first, global program in real estate, Colliers International’s PropTech Accelerator Powered by Techstars combines emerging PropTech companies’ expertise in technology innovation and building accelerators, with Colliers’ real estate experience and global network, in order to advance the industry. Offering opportunities for emerging companies to flourish by providing them with financial support and access to mentors, the Colliers program allows ten early-stage PropTech companies to work closely with more than 150 hand-selected experts each year; to receive guidance on business plans, gain traction in the market and pitch products to potential investors. Establishing the program two years ago, Colliers has since worked with 20 early-stage start-ups and companies and launched 19 pilot projects with its program graduates. As a catalyst for collaboration, Colliers has successfully integrated program participants’ technology within its offerings. Shaping technologies and developing valuable solutions by utilizing innovations from around the world, Colliers PropTech Accelerator Powered by Techstars has benefitted the industry at large by supporting both new ideas and enterprising founders.
Empowering investment managers to make faster, more informed business decisions through real-time access to critical data and documents, Dealpath offers a game-changing solution for how built environment industries transact. Founded in 2014 with the mission to offer digital insights, data and collaboration through purpose-built software, Dealpath has successfully created a leading intelligent software solution. Modernizing real estate services through a suite of features, the platform’s deals dashboard provides transparency and the ability to discover specifically tailored assets as an intelligent search feature and intuitive content management system. As a leading cloud-based, deal management platform, Dealpath is leveraged by top investment and development firms for smart pipeline tracking, powerful deal analytics and collaborative workflows, to achieve optimal risk-adjusted returns. Unlocking value within the built world, Dealpath recently surpassed $6 trillion in real estate transactions that have been evaluated on its platform; where clients have additionally accomplished an average 475% ROI, annually. Dealpath has gained the backing of top-tier VC and strategic investors, including Blackstone and JLL, in addition to Nasdaq, as its first-ever entry into the real estate space with its recent Dealpath investment. The platform continues to grow its presence due to its revolutionary technology, streamlining power and tangible impact on the industry.
Committed to the experience economy and the notion that buildings are only valuable with people in them, HqO launched in 2018 to generate value for commercial office owners by providing them with the technology to engage occupants. Generating real connection among office buildings, tenants and everyday technologies, HqO transformed its tenant experience software into a complete end-to-end operating system for commercial real estate owners, in effort to solve the major industry business issues. Within its platform, the firm delivers its tenant app, which provides flexibility for changing work environments, its marketplace, where users can find and manage apps and vendors, and its digital grid, where HqO captures and structures all data on each building’s usage. Seamlessly connecting each of these layers within an easy-to-use desktop view, HqO offers customers the ability to efficiently and intelligently operate a modern commercial real estate portfolio. Through its recent creations, HqO gained additional prominence and has commenced establishing its European presence. In addition to securing an impressive roster of partners and clients, HqO currently powers more than 100 million square feet of commercial real estate space, globally.
Driving a digital transformation of the industry by streamlining fundraising, improving the timeliness and accuracy of investor reporting and enabling real-time access to data, Juniper Square serves as the first investment management software company designed specifically to serve the commercial real estate industry. Delivering tremendous value to the industry through software that enables general partners to communicate with investors, the company additionally assists investment managers in scaling their businesses through a modern approach to tracking and understanding investment performance. Founded less than four years ago, Juniper Square now has more than $1 trillion in managed assets, spanning 21,000 investments and 800 general partner clients on its platform. Since its launch, the firm has raised nearly $80 million in venture capital, in addition to more than doubling its revenue each year and doubling its number of clients each year. Providing product offerings, including client relationship management, fundraising automation, investor reporting, partnership accounting and an investor portal, Juniper Square’s platform offers a competitive advantage to clients; with customers reporting a 40% increase in fundraising activity through the use of its software.
Creating an all-in-one workplace experience platform for property managers who oversee numerous buildings, tenants and vendors simultaneously, Lane utilizes technology to streamline all aspects of day-to-day life for both managers and tenants. Highlighting three core competencies, the company offers a mobile app, allowing tenants to manage and maneuver the workplace; a content and events manager, allowing building teams to drive engagement; and a web solution platform, allowing property teams to streamline operations and leverage data for more informed decisions. Connecting the workplace ecosystem of any office building, Lane’s technology organizes core building activities, provides automation, integration and amenities, and offers perks and rewards to users. Upon launching in 2018, the company was invited to be a part of Colliers Techstars, before successfully partnering with Colliers International’s Neighborhood platform. Lane has since launched in Dubai and Australia, opened its new headquarters in Toronto and has tripled its staff in the past year. While working to integrate its software with common industry tools, Lane has recently, rapidly adapted to help property managers prepare for and coordinate a safe return to work.
Upon launching numerous successful commercial real estate technology start-ups throughout his career, Robert Finlay founded Lobby CRE in 2019; bringing to market an innovative and practical solution to meet the challenges of real estate professionals. Lobby CRE serves as an asset management platform that assists commercial real estate firms in aggregating, analyzing, reporting and visualizing property performance. As one of the first asset management software platforms to collect, organize and store a multitude of data sources in real-time, the platform offers companies with immediate access to all of their data sources. Providing a library of customizable dashboards and reports, Lobby CRE enables commercial real estate companies to manage and accelerate property performance. Developing, marketing and utilizing modern technology, such as machine learning and artificial intelligence, the platform helps users identify risks and opportunities within their portfolio. Further transforming portfolios through intelligent data management and analytics, the company streamlines operations and property data to deliver accessible and actionable insights to clients.
Logical Buildings has emerged as a premier energy technology platform within the building energy management environment. Providing property owners and managers with real-time, data-driven insight and perspective guidance as a PropTech solution, the platform empowers and equips building staff with actionable insights to optimize energy utilization, boost revenues and improve building systems. The company’s hardware-agnostic and customizable, SmartKit AI software platform and app offers a simplified interface for owners and managers to implement cost-saving decisions and proactively run building systems by unifying monitoring and control of energy-consuming equipment. In 2019, the platform launched a first-of-its-kind tool, Energy Procurement Advisory eXchange, which breaks down energy market data from thousands of utility accounts and smart meters and uses machine learning and predictive analytics to forecast energy consumption; allowing landlords to mitigate energy price risk without paying broker fees. The company also recently established a partnership with one of the largest power and gas providers, which integrated Logical Buildings’ software into its offerings to provide property managers with a powerful data platform. Logical Buildings currently has 300 buildings in its portfolio, and it continues to play a vital role in the future of real estate energy use and broader energy operations.
Recognizing that commercial real estate was lagging behind other industries in its use of automation, data analytics and proactive insights, Northspyre was founded in 2017 with the vision to introduce innovations and address traditional challenges faced by project delivery teams. Built for owners, developers, project management firms and internal real estate teams, Northspyre serves as a collaborative digital solution, which provides real-time information and access to smartly indexed data; eliminating dependence on error-prone spreadsheets and outdated legacy applications. Allowing project delivery professionals to achieve consistent, predictable outcomes, Northspyre aims to upend the status quo and represents the only intelligence software, purpose-built for real estate professionals. Through its tailor-made software, real estate teams are able to build credible forecasts, ensure delivery timelines, track costs, and review and approve proposals, contracts and invoices. Allowing professionals to experience further control and visibility into their projects, the platform automates tedious tasks and has proven to save teams at least 2% in overall project costs and up to 30% in staffing hours. Since the platform’s launch, it has facilitated more than $15 billion in customer projects spanning all asset classes. Northspyre is additionally experiencing its highest-ever user engagement this year.
Aware of the challenges that prevent technology solutions from gaining traction within the industry, RET Ventures was established to create an improved process as a pioneering venture capital firm focused solely on bringing cutting-edge PropTech solutions to the real estate market. Striving to drive innovation and improve technology in the single-family rental and multifamily sectors, the firm brings on real estate companies as strategic partners, rather than raising capital from financial investors. Through its unique approach, RET Ventures constantly assesses early-stage start-up technology companies and their ability to add value and alleviate pain points for owners and operators. Identifying and investing in technologies that will benefit the space, RET Ventures then remains heavily involved in guiding each company’s growth by leveraging its own collective experience to direct start-ups, beyond financial investment, to help them scale. The firm’s 36 strategic partners also provide great value in nurturing the fledging technology companies by serving as development partners; helping refine products to meet industry needs. Founded in 2017, RET Ventures has invested in 15 real estate-focused technologies to-date, each of which improve operations and offer convenience to professionals and residents.
ROBOTIC PARKING SYSTEMS INC.
Recognizing the notion that available parking space can define a commercial real estate project’s success or failure, Robotic Parking Systems Inc. launched to efficiently reduce parking space and allow for greater development capacity and added revenues. In 1994, the company coined the term “robotic parking” to describe its patented automated lift and run parking technology. The company’s technology compresses up to three times the amount of parking spaces in the same size as a typical concrete parking ramp by utilizing simultaneously operating robots for parking. As no individuals enter the parking garages, and as no cars run in the parking garages, Robotic Parking Systems greatly increases safety and eliminates major carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide emissions. While offerings a premium valet experience, the system additionally offers financial benefits for commercial properties by featuring numerous cameras for reduced insurance costs, and by utilizing an app for contactless parking and current health concerns. Considering the many factors that impact commercial real estate properties, the company has incorporated a strategy which assesses connectivity software, autonomous driving, car sharing services and car charging stations. Leading the integration of emerging transportation technologies, the company continues to provide major advantages to commercial real estate properties.
Founder and CEO, Laura Krashakova set out to disrupt the commercial real estate financing and investment world by launching SpaceQuant in 2015. Developing the first AI-powered automation and decision platform to value, underwrite and track the performance of commercial real estate, SpaceQuant offers a data processing solution through the use of automated analysis, AI, algorithms and natural language processing. Remaining at the forefront of the investment lifecycle revolution, SpaceQuant’s software delivers accurate real-time results and proactive solutions for lenders, servicers and borrowers to benefit from. With access to detailed property data three months prior the rest of the market, and with assistance in underwriting, lending and servicing, SpaceQuant users report a significant reduction in time spent on analyses; resulting in corresponding cost reductions. Eliminating human error and enabling faster, smarter decision-making, SpaceQuant’s intelligent automation continues to target the industry’s core problems. Within three years, SpaceQuant cultivated an impressive roster of clients, including top-tier players and Fortune 500 companies. The company has continued to see strong growth and expansions throughout the pandemic.
As pioneers in the burgeoning co-living asset class, Starcity has emerged as one of the largest co-living brands in the world. Using cutting-edge technology as both a developer and an operator, Starcity’s fully-integrated housing solution allows the company to deliver housing units at a fraction of the cost of a traditional developer. Bringing the cost of living down, Starcity allows young urbanites making minimum wage to experience opportunities in the world’s most sought-after cities. The company flawlessly controls the entire end-to-end experience, from when a potential resident uses its website, to when the tenant moves into their new home. In addition to raising more than $75 million in venture capital to-date, Starcity currently has more than $200 million in assets under management and expects significant growth year-over-year for the foreseeable future. In addition to ensuring a diverse staff at each community, Starcity partners with local community groups for each new development in effort to engage and help the most marginalized communities, while providing a source of energy to residents and surrounding areas.
Shifting the dynamic of leasing processes, digital leasing platform, TenantBase is designed to help the rent paying tenant. Providing a modern consumer experience, TenantBase uses best-in-class technology and professional service to offer an end-to-end leasing experience to businesses. In May 2020, TenantBase released its online transaction platform, TenantBoard, where qualified tenants’ requirements are posted for the leasing community to review. Owners are then able to view general company characteristics, such as size, lease term and location, to determine a good fit and submit their property to the tenant for consideration. Empowering the leasing community to transact business digitally, the software utilizes AI algorithms to suggest best matches and proprietary machine learning models to connect tenants to vacant space. The platform enables rapid feedback between the tenant, their broker and the leasing community, and it allows professionals to schedule tours and discuss deal terms. Offering a dramatic change to the typical leasing process, TenantBoard additionally serves as a free marketing tool for the leasing community. Further modernizing the commercial real estate leasing process through TenantBoard’s launch, TenantBase is continues to deliver high-quality service to small and mid-sized businesses.
Executing its core mission to build community and provide affordable experiences within the multifamily and office sectors through innovative technology, TFLiving continually pushes the envelope in order to serve clients, property managers, buildings, residents and tenants. Leveraging its technology to create time-saving and cost-saving solutions for property managers, TFLiving also provides an all-in-one portfolio solution to engage residents. Its customizable platform, TFLiving Connect offers a suite of amenities, including fitness classes, wellness programs, pet care, lifestyle services, staff appreciation events and more, to improve tenant experience, create community and increase net operating expenses. In addition to its services, TFLiving has also helped more than 1000 wellness professionals get paid through its offerings. Through a partnership with Colliers International, TFLiving has extended its reach to service more than 200,000 residential units. Within the past three years, TFLiving has increased its portfolio and expanded throughout the US. Continuing to foster community during stay-at-home restrictions this year, while keeping buildings and residents safe, TFLiving remained agile and provided its amenity offerings by incorporating virtual services to engage tenants.
Allowing business and experts to stay better connected through a mobile-app solution, the CXApp works to build the foundation for the future of the workplace. Its technology-focused team sets the workplace up for success by enabling hyper-focused communication, creating touchless environments, contactless interactions, active monitoring and offering better insights into space utilization through investment in IoT, mobility and cloud solutions. Within the office landscape, the app’s campus platform consolidates disconnected business systems to provide on-demand access to relevant features and content across corporate campuses. As the first solution for a connected workplace with an open ecosystem for partners and technology provider integrations, the CXApp Smart Campus offers employees with a mobile command center for workplace related items, such as managing visitors, campus information, real-time news, colleague’s locations, live indoor mapping, mobile food ordering and more. The company’s agile team built additional software and capabilities this year, such as contactless remote access and conference room booking, and proprietary peer-to-peer social distancing alerts, to assist companies looking to re-enter the office. With its intelligent partner ecosystem and a SaaS model built for scalability across people and venues, the CXApp continually provides the ability to manage various workplace factors from personal devices.
Leveraging an insider’s perspective on the common inefficiencies of the leasing process, and cognizant of the paint points affecting both landlord and renter, Vero Leasing built a cloud-based platform to revolutionize such issues. Through proactive innovation and technology, the company enables users to lease residential properties with unprecedented speed, ease and security. Founded in 2018, Vero Leasing has achieved success by modernizing and implementing a truly mobile and digitally native solution, which reduces the time it takes to turn a lead into a renter by more than 99%. In January 2020, the firm closed its $3.2 million seed funding round, and it has since continued rapid adoption within the industry. The company utilizes mobile tools and employs its new patent pending financial software, Vero built income and asset verification, which grants property owners the ability to verify key insights into each renter’s financial history; helping landlords mitigate risk and protect property valuation. Uncovering comprehensive financial stories, the fintech solution extends beyond credit checks, by scanning data points through analytics. The firm’s thoughtfully-designed platform is additionally layered with robust, institutional-grade security protocols; offering peace of mind and security as a trusted partner to renters and landlords.