It seems like several real estate firms are getting influenced by venture capitalists and initiating investments in firms that are focused on technology and analytics in the real estate sector.
Companies such as Cushman & Wakefield, CBRE Group Inc, Hines and Rialto Capital Management are reported to make direct investments in venture capital firms which are driven to make such investments.
According to Jeffrey J. Daniels, from Institutional Property Advisors, making an investment in a new firm is a lot cheaper than monthly fee payments given for the firm’s services. In Daniels’ view, a subscription is not the best idea when there is an option to make capital investments for $100,000 in the firm. The company is on the lookout for lucrative investments in data analytics start-up ventures in the real estate industry so that it can gain an edge over its competition.
There are several companies which are seeking to sell off stakes in apartments/lease offices/buildings online. In a possible game-changing scenario, Amazon.com could now unlock doors and place people’s packages inside the building, reported Daniel.
CBRE’s technology acquisitions
In the last one year, CBRE, the huge investment and real estate firm, has managed to make 6 technology acquisitions, reported Chandra Dhandapani, the chief technology officer in Dallas. The company is also looking to boost its in-house technology staff, added Ms. Dhandapani.
One of the CBRE deals includes the acquisition of Floored Inc, an NYC based firm which is focused on creating three-dimensional interactive technology and graphics. With access to the smart floor-planning technology of Floored, CBRE executives will be able to develop digital innovations that can enhance leasing and marketing of various commercial properties.
The team at CBRE is being extremely cautious while making these acquisitions. It is consistently analyzing whether the acquisition will bring any tangible value to the company and if data would have any real impact.
Data analytics evolving in real estate
Brad Greiwe is the managing partner and co-founder of Fifth Wall Ventures. This is a venture capitalist firm that makes investments in realty technology companies. According to Greiwe, real estate firms are slowly learning about using data analytics. Up till now, Fifth Wall has made an investment in a variety of different firms such as WiredScore, a company that provides a rating system for commercial realty. It draws a comparison between the digital infrastructures of various buildings. It has also invested in a platform called Appear Here, which focuses on leasing temporary retail space.