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Sunday PropTech Review; 4th February 2018

POSTED BY   james
February 4, 2018

Hey James,

A fascinating introduction to my conference season this week. A more traditional looking property client ran an internal conference looking predominantly at technological adoption. Aside from the ironic decision to not allow mobile phones to be on, it is wonderful to see the cogs turning as they see the future ahead of them.

My only hope when I run conferences like this is that they put some of the learnings into action immediately. If they don’t and consider it as being not their problem, then nothing will change except the slow slide to being disrupted (and whilst I don’t often use that word, I meant it in this instance).

Other than that, i am finishing off this review by watching the Six Nations. Looking forward to tomorrow’s match with Italy…..especially with my trip to Dublin this coming week. Hoping we do ourselves justice.

Enjoy the week of news.

Oli Farago, Andy Dyer from Coyote

The boys from Coyote tell us about their journey from property into PropTech. An interesting perspective on their journey from being an internal project within the huge M7 Real Estate to acting as a start up.

“You need such a thick skin”: Why a career in tech is not for everyone

VTS’s co-founder, Ryan Masiello, discusses why it takes a certain type of person to make it in the tech sector. The chief revenue officer of the New York-based company left a role in corporate real estate at JLL to set up VTS.

MetapropCast w/ ED Bartlett CEO of Kykloud

How does a PropTech startup from the UK become attractive enough to be acquired by a bigger real estate tech firm in Texas in the industry’s first significant acquisition of the year?

Most Shared: Big tech, bad tech and PropTech at Davos

Davos was. until recently, a Swiss town noted for its exceptional skiing. That was until the World Economic Forum (WEF) took over and now the town’s name is synonymous with images of flustered politicians and world leaders, doing their very best to tell us that everything is going really well.

This brief article from JLL’s Anthony Couse explains how discussions around the Digital Transformation took centre stage during the WEF. Happily, it seems there is no argument, from anywhere in the world, that tech is here and that it is going to change everything we know and do.

And it’s the job of many people at WEF to ensure that technology is rolled out across society sensibly, safely, and compassionately.

As founder of Alibaba, Jack Ma, says, 

“New technology will create a lot of successful people and interesting careers but, honestly, every new technology will create social problems”.

Open Banking makes its debut in the rental market

One of the biggest issues that young prospective homeowners are facing today is that, after decades of renting, and a increasing aversion to credit cards, their credit scores are too low to receive a reasonable mortgage quote.

But now, online rental payments platform, CreditLadder, has announced it is to allow rental tenants to improve their credit score. They do so by recording rent payments being made to a landlord by a tenant and then passing the data to partner credit reference agency Experian, which then adds it to the tenant’s credit history.

PropTech Figure of the Week:

Stephen Smyth, CEO of Coord.

This man has been chosen to front Alphabet’s new smart city company, Coord. Their potential for disruption in property is simply immeasurable. Watch this space.

 Influencer Quote of the Week:

Mark Witherspoon at the Internal Conference this week;

“Nobody wants to speak to an estate agent unless they really have to. We need to realise this simple fact”

 How To Boss It Like… Gemma Young, co-founder and CEO of Settled

Gemma Young’s Settled has taken property by storm with their no-sale-no-fee house selling company.

This profile mixes the daft with the fascinating and is well worth a read for any PropTech CEO.

Geovation Programme seeks new GeoTech and PropTech disruptors

This is really big news for anyone out there with a startup and looking for an opportunity to be noticed.

Geovation, founded by Ordnance Survey (OS) and HM Land Registry (HMLR), has announced that it is calling for applications to enter the incubator, receive £20,000 in funding and a range of resources and services to help develop their businesses.

Geovation was set up to identify and support SMEs that are using geospatial technology and data to create new products and services for the PropTech and GeoTech industries.

If you want in, you need to get your application in ASAP! Good luck to all of you!

Real Estate’s Tech Disruptors

This is a long read article from New York taking a holistic view on tech’s disruption of property; perfect reading for your morning coffee.

There’s an awful lot in here, from Ten-X’s $141.8 million algorithms to explaining just how Opendoor has managed to raise $455 million.

Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs launches a platform for making the city of tomorrow

Superb article, as always, from Wired.

“This is not some random activity from our perspective,” said Alphabet Chairman, Eric Schmidt, last year. “This is the culmination, from our side, of almost 10 years of thinking about how technology can improve people’s lives.”

We know Google has had smart city goals since they announced plans to build their own city in Torontobut today they’ve taken things another huge step forward by introducing Coord.

Coord is a software platform designed to allow all smart aspects of a city, any city, to ‘Coordinate’ (get it?) with each other. That means parking metres, parking spaces, bike rental schemes, ride hailing apps, energy data, and public transport, among EVERYTHING else, can all communicate with each other. Essentially, data can also be shared between individual cities around the world.

“We don’t ourselves operate a mobility service,” says Stephen Smyth, the new CEO of Coord. “We’re 100 percent focused on being the connective tissue.”

Why are they doing this? Read the article and find out.

PropTech startup Ahauz launches after raising £2.9m

London-based startup, Ahauz, is a PropTech firm seeking to help first time buyers get on the property ladder.

They have previously received £300,000 from early-stage investor Forward Partners, and have now raised £2.6m from “high-net worth property investors”. Read about these new players, here.

Zillow is being sued for misleading customers

This lawsuit revolves around Zillow’s ‘Zestimate’ valuation tool which automatically places an estimate market value, daily, on every property in the states.

The problem is that Zestimate is inaccurate. As such, one homeowner in New Jersey saw their home go on the market at $7.8m. But the Zestimate, also displayed on the page, quoted just $3.7m. They claim that this discrepancy dissuaded several buyers from purchasing the house.

The Best of the Rest:

1. PropTech Spain Infographic

2. The CRE Tech Trends and Takeaways from Bisnow’s PropTech Event

3. New PropTech platform ‘could save letting agents up to £3.5m’

4. PropTech firm Pixel Image develops housing industry first for Scots builder

PropTech Events This Week:

1. Wed 7th: Outlook 2018: Europe & Nordics Investment Briefing

2. Wed 7th: 2nd Digital Real Estate Summit Romandie 2018

3. Thu 8th: Digital Opportunities 2018: PropTech from strategy to implementation

That’s all for now, folks…

I’m off for a glass of wine, some more rugby and to get the fire going….

Have a great week – i’m off to Dublin and Lithuania this week for conferences. Looking forward to it.


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