European Proptech Report August 2017

1. Berlin Has Arrived as a Top Location for Commercial Real Estate in Europe

A growing tech-startup scene is fueling the commercial real estate market in Berlin. Axel Springer, the largest digital publishing house in Europe, signaled the Berlin office boom after they sold some of their Berlin real estate assets to Blackstone Real Estate Partners at an unthinkable sum of 755 million euros. Increasing demand for office space is pushing Berlin commercial property prices upward. Other major companies are also utilizing the Berlin office boom, including Google and SAP.

Not only is demand increasing, but the vacancy rate of office space is at a record low of 2.7%. This is the lowest in 17 major European cities, including Paris and London. In the foreseeable future, Berlin’s real estate market will only continue to grow.

2. The Future of Real Estate doesn’t involve Real Estate Brokers and Agents

A report by Remit Consulting found that within the next decade, up to 90% of the core tasks done by real estate service providers will be done by technology. Technology services, like artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and blockchain are automating the real estate industry. They intend to boost efficiency, reduce costs and increase time efficiency.

Although it’s undeniable that technology is transforming the real estate industry, many brokers, agents, and property managers are in denial to accept technology will replace their job. However, the real revolution has just started and growth will only continue. Overall, it seems that technological changes will be beneficial as the real estate process becomes easier and faster, even if some jobs are taken away.

3. Large Real Estate Brokers are Finally Embracing PropTech

JLL is prepared for the future of Commercial Real Estate after they launched JLL Spark, an entity focused on building new technology-based businesses, products, strategic investments and supporting startups. In the future, they expect to integrate smart building programs, virtual tours and big data.

Meanwhile, Cushman & Wakefield has a similar approach to go headfirst into PropTech. They recently partnered with Metaprop NYC, the world’s premier real estate technology nexus. The goal of the partnership is to provide startups with strategic advice and corporate development across the real estate industry using fast tracked technology.

Lastly, Knight Frank is embracing PropTech by signing a deal with leasing software View the Space. The online platform allows agents to manage deal activity, identify trends and quantify portfolio performance, which will allow Knight Frank to streamline their data flow and internal activities as well as share updates with clients in real time. The implementation of technology in real estate is growing more than ever.

4. Predictions for the Consolidation of CRE Tech

As commercial real estate industry becomes tech-enabled, CRE technology continues to grow with many exciting developments. Within the next year, there will be several trends to watch out for. Some of these trends include revenue growth, new software, crowdfunding, and robo-advisors. To read about more trends, check out this article.

5. Proptech Startup Develops Real-Time Facial Recognition Technology

Startup company Credas created an app to help letting agents verify ID documents in real-time. The software claims to speed up ID verification and record each verification on a secure cloud-based platform. Potential tenants can text and email a link to the app to verify themselves from anywhere and at anytime. This app is just one example of how technology is making the real estate process simpler and easier for everyone involved.

6. New App aims to Make Renting a Property as Simple as using Uber

A new rental app Goodlord recently closed a round of seed funding with 2 million euros of investment. The company is aiming to make renting through letting agents more efficient by combining processing contracts, credit references, and payments all in one app. Instead of using fax machines and scanning documents, this app reduces the time it takes to rent a property by enabling documents to be uploaded and e-signed by the agent and potential tenant through the app. One deal even took under 30 minutes!