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Was CREtech NYC Worth Attending?

Taking a two hour train ride to Seattle, then a second 30 minute train to the airport, fly for 5 hours, and then ride in a Lyft for an hour into NYC is a lot of time to invest in getting to CREtech NYC.

But was it worth it?


After attending CREtech, here’s my one, single biggest take away: I’m more convinced than ever that real estate (commercial and residential) is headed for a massive transition because of tech advancement.

About CREtech NYC

Over 1,000 investors, commercial brokers, tech leaders, founders, VCs, and angels came together for a full-day of insightful panel discussions and meetings. Lots of ideas were shared on stage and during one-on-ones in the different conferencing areas set up.

Of the ideas and statements I captured, not all are new or different from things you’ve read before, but these are straight from the VCs that are funding the transformation of real estate through tech.

My Notes from CREtech:

  • Tools that are/will continue to emerge:
    • Are focused on one niche
    • Solve specific pain-points
    • Are easy to use
    • Are self-serving (to the user)
  • Real estate tech lack top talent
  • Consumers of tech are not ready for adopting all new tech
    • Creates challenge of timing new products and services
  • Accelerators should be specialists and focused
    • Generalists aren’t bad, but won’t likely help companies advance as well to their next round
  • Angels wants:
    • A working product (not perfect, but working)
    • Be able to test and fail fast
  • Stages of funding as perceived by angels
    • Have team / idea – pre-seed
    • Validation stage – seed
    • Traction stage – Series A
  • Advice to Founders
    • Along with updates, ask your angels for help & be specific
      • Finding talent
      • Getting intros to other industry leaders
  • Predictions
    • Next big segments ripe for mass disruption:
      • Senior living
      • Home based healthcare
      • Affordability
      • Student housing
  • 5G is going to make use & consumption of data in the Built Word far more accessible
  • From JLL Spark:
    • They only invest in companies they can add strategic value. Will turn down game-changing startups if they can’t add strategic value.
  • Value props of real estate tech services need to be self-evident
  • Key to adoption is simplicity and ease to obtain (From the panel, “Investors want/need tech to have this”)
  • Build vs. Buy
    • Common is to buy vs build because of pressure to scale, but often buying doesn’t meet business structure or goals
  • Things to consider with broker tools
    • Should enable to broker to deliver better level of service
    • It’s still a people business, so focus should enable for people to do business together
  • Why Real Estate and Why Now?
    • Softbank representative – based on trends from last 5 years, business is big enough to warrant the size of funds they are committing
    • Talent has helped propel product, now capital is following
    • “No other choice” in regards to what vertical remain for disruption
    • Companies mentioned as disruptors include Ribbon, Compass, Opendoor
    • Companies most exciting to VCs are, “making processes frictionless”
  • VCs want to see more
    • Data plays, monetizing data
    • Access to investment opportunities
    • Reduce friction in transactions
    • Reduce the needs for intermediaries
  • Big “Obvious” opportunities includes
    • Title insurance
      • “Blockchain could be the solution”
      • And then someone said, “AI is much closer to making impact than Blockchain”  ¯_(ツ)_/¯
  • Leading Venture Capitalists Talk
    • 10-15 years there will be no discernible difference between real estate and tech companies
    • China is where opportunity will be in 10-15 years
    • US may be leading proptech overall, but lots of very interesting products overseas that could pass US in distinct categories
    • Fintech and Proptech are bleeding so much together, some VCs are no longer making distinctions
    • Student housing, senior living, multi-family, & SFH all have different operations and require different levels of service
    • View failure as a datapoint (when asked about RealtyShares)
    • Exciting Categories include:
      • Internet of Things
      • Apartment Buildings
    • Commercial appraisal software mentioned as ripe for disruption
    • Opendoor talked about quite a bit

CREtech NYC was exciting and overwhelming. CREtech announced event locations and cities for 2019. I’ll likely be attending at least one–if not all.

  • LA – March 28-29
  • Boston – April 11
  • NYC – October 16-17
  • Seattle – Not announced but come on, let’s make that happen!

The post Was CREtech NYC Worth Attending? appeared first on GeekEstate Blog.

 As an agent who's an expert in this local area, I bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise about buying and selling real estate here. It's not the same everywhere, so you need someone you can trust for up-to-date information. My background consists of a variety of talents & interests, from History to computers & Outdoor activities. On my free time you’ll find me golfing, hiking, tending to my Ranch, or spending time with my Family. I enjoy researching a multitude of subjects, music, real estate & web development, to name a few. My personal goal is to help my clients buy or sell to make their real estate dreams into realities. There is only one constant in real estate, service wins.   I am passionate about providing a level of service that stands out from the competition. Exceptional service doesn't necessarily mean working more hours, it means leveraging technology to work smarter. Finding out what best works for my client's needs.   There is no better feeling than helping a family find their perfect home.   Serving Cochise County and Beyond!!

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