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Are you confused about this new technology called blockchain? Do you spend hours wondering how is this chain created and why is it called blockchain technology? Why is it so special? What all industries are using it or can use it? If the answers to any of the above questions is yes, then worry not and keep reading. We will start with what is blockchain? And why is it making waves in the world of technology. Let's start with the definitions of blockchain for both layman and technocrats. In layman's language – Blockchain is nothing but an ever-growing secure, shared record-keeping system in which each user of the data holds a copy of the records, which can only be updated if all parties involved in a transaction agree to update. Now let's see what the same thing means in technical language – Technical definition: Blockchain in technical terms is a peer-to-peer, distributed ledger that is cryptographically secure, append-only, immutable and updateable only via consensus among peers. Too technical for you to understand? Worry not – it means the same thing as defined in layman language, but since it is for technocrats it has more technical terms. If you are still…
In 2009, a mysterious person (or persons) named Satoshi Nakamoto published a white paper that introduced the world to bitcoin-a digital payment system that eliminated the need for financial institutions. For the cryptocurrency to work, transactions would need to be recorded in a database known as the blockchain. In 2011, the first bitcoin "bubble" took place when a single coin reached a value of $31.00. In December of 2017, the value of a bitcoin reached a high of over $19,000.00, indicating the success of blockchain technology's first primary use case and opening the door to further innovation. This presents an opportunity in the commercial real estate space. Historically known to resist change, a new generation of startups are building applications on top of the blockchain that will disrupt the industry and force us to rethink the concept of value.     WHAT IS A BLOCKCHAIN? THE SIMPLE VERSION   Steve Weikal is Head of Industry Relations at the MIT Center for Real Estate. He also lectures and conducts research on innovative new technology and business models that disrupt the traditional ways of developing, transacting and managing real estate. Weikal describes the blockchain as a trusted, general ledger. "In a building, all the information (mortgage documents,…
Built by Berlin-based startup Quorum Control, Tupelo brings benefits of blockchain technology to the mainstream in the form of custom-built chain trees for ownership, with backing from groundbreaking Silicon Valley investment firm Initialized Capital. BERLIN (November 1, 2018) - Tupelo, the first ownership-based distributed ledger technology (DLT) platform, launched its TestNet today, opening a new, faster pathway for blockchain-like technology to be utilized in real-world applications. The platform is owned and operated by Quorum Control, a six-person startup of dedicated builders focused on driving DLT adoption. To accomplish its goal, Quorum Control sought and secured traditional equity investment from experienced and successful venture capital firms instead of undertaking  an initial coin offering (ICO) for funding. Quorum Control is committed to the development, testing and refinement of a new application of DLT that contains many characteristics of blockchains but includes a more efficient consensus algorithm. When Tupelo has been proven effective as a tool for real-world business applications--like real estate title insurance transfer and supply chain transparency--Quorum Control will undertake an ICO. Backed by Experienced and Proven VCs Led by Initialized Capital San Francisco-based Initialized Capital led Quorum Control's $2.9 million funding round, bringing well-established and influential Silicon Valley resources to…
imbrex and TruSet are partnering to collect and curate real estate contracts for each state using blockchain technology. TruSet's blockchain platform specializes in the collection of high quality reference data. Imbrex's real estate transaction closing room, Escrow Commons, is a transparent closing room where individuals on the buying and selling side of a real estate transaction can exchange transaction documents, clearly identify and assign action items, and process escrow, deposits and transaction funds. Both teams saw this as an excellent opportunity to employ TruSet's technology and community to advance the collection and curation of essential real estate data.   In the residential real estate industry, states use unique standards for purchase and sale agreements (PSAs). Some states, such as California and Colorado, do not require attorney involvement and contracts are standardized by local governments. In other states, like New York, where legal representation is more customary, contract frameworks vary. This lack of standardization creates confusion and inefficiencies in real estate markets and provides a tremendous opportunity for the large group of technologists and real estate agents around the country to curate the contracts using community consensus. Imbrex will utilize the TruSet community curated purchase and sale agreements for each U.S.…
I once again participated excellent Propteq: Europe event in London, which brings together a number of prop tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, investors and people from the industry in general. There was a number of well-run theme sessions, two of which I co-hosted. Having spent the day in the midst of exchanging ideas and discussing emerging topics, two of the things stood out: AI and blockchain. Even though arguably much hyped, these two will most likely have the most profound impact on the real estate industry than anything else before – or ok… maybe except for the electricity. What do I base my conclusions upon? I think AI is in its infancy but there are already working adaptations of machine learning. One can easily think repetitive transactions of similar character in great quantity, like mortgage applications, to be handled by an algorithm – and BTW, one of the biggest banks in the Nordics is already exploring of moving its mortgage application process into an AI assisted process, where the offer could be generated by AI and given automatically to the customer. Same goes for customer / service requests from a building, where an algorithm can combine a lot of data from building automation…
The world of real estate investment has evolved since the internet has embraced every single aspect of today's world business. It's important, in 2019, to understand how the real estate investment's world is embracing new technologies and, most importantly, why. It's crucial, in fact, to break down each individual variable which, when combined, to understand the future of the technological field applied to real estate investment. Let's analyse how. Investments and Monitoring Via Blockchain The blockchain has become quite a trendy subject since crypto values have become commercially powerful a couple of years ago. The recent usage of blockchain-based features from banks like Santander and more has, in fact, resulted in a "standardization" of this very matter, which has also resulted in a vast flux of investments in and from big companies who always placed themselves as big, powerful players within this sector. The Power Of Front-End Development And Real Estate Investment Sites Real estate investment, since it moved online, has always been a fundamental part in every front-end developer's portfolio, given how requested websites and applications/calculators are either in the front-end sector in general and, most importantly, in a general business one. The fact that many eCommerce developers have…
Yet another MIPIM is over. Thank you for the interesting discussions about real estate and proptech's new twists and turns – and of course huge thanks for the organisers for making it all happen! You might have heard my thoughts and comments from the casting videos I made at MIPIM – but to wrap it all up, here's my small recap of what went down in Cannes this year. Probably many participants noticed during the first days that technology has noticeably matured: more day-to-day activities take place and substantial companies like Schneider and Siemens are entering the industry. MIPIM Innovation Forum proved that real estate is now more or less about energy savings, smart buildings and IoT. Even though they were emphasized at the event, I still think they're not really on top of the game for the time being. I think everyone has heard about this and is probably talking about it – blockchain. The subject we all know, was of course highly discussed at MIPIM. There's no doubt that it will have a major impact on the development of real estate and property technology industries. One thing that really surprised me at MIPIM PropTech startup competition was the fact that…
imbrex celebrates a year of platform growth and innovation to create the world's first decentralized residential and commercial real estate marketplace. From pre-listing coordination through transaction, imbrex streamlines and secures the buying and selling process. In its first calendar year, imbrex (https://imbrex.io) has broken into and positively disrupted the real estate marketplace, while redefining core concepts for brokerages, residential and commercial agents, and consumers alike.   Founded by real estate veteran and tech entrepreneur Stephen King, imbrex introduced first-of-its-kind solutions to simplify listing, buying, and selling real estate. imbrex leverages the Ethereum blockchain, an open source environment that stores data in a cryptographically validated and secured immutable ledger, to offer maximum security and compliance for effortless transactions.   All information on imbrex is shared via Inter Planetary File System (IPFS), a peer-to-peer distribution protocol. Listing and transactional data is never stored on a third-party server, ensuring first of its kind ownership, control, and security of information.   Stephen referenced Buckminster Fuller to describe imbrex's impact on the market.   "'You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.' We're building a new way for the real estate…
Rare and exclusive conversation with Brad Greiwe, Co-Founder, Fifth Wall and Josh Stein, CEO, Harbor about Stein's pioneering new startup that is destined to be one of the leading platforms for blockchain technology in the real estate industry. New York, NY (May 8, 2018) -- CREtech (cretech.com), the leading event, content and connectivity platform for the commercial real estate industry, has announced that Fifth Wall's Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Brad Greiwe and Harbor's CEO, Josh Stein, will be the Keynote Speakers for CREtech San Francisco  on June 21. Fifth Wall is an investor in Harbor, a blockchain technology company that aims to revolutionize the world's largest capital market with innovation in crypto-securities compliance. Brad is currently the Co-founder and Managing Partner at Fifth Wall. Fifth Wall Ventures is the largest venture capital firm focused on technology solutions for the Built World. Fifth Wall is connecting the world's largest owners and operators of real estate with the entrepreneurs and innovators redefining how the world interacts with its physical environment. With $250M in assets under management, Fifth Wall is backed by CBRE, Lennar, Hines, Equity Residential, Prologis, Macerich, Host Hotels, and Lowe's Home Improvement. Fifth Wall invests in businesses from all sectors…
There's a lot of talk about the 4th industrial revolution and how we are moving towards the fusion of technology and people. It seems like everyone is talking about robotics, artificial intelligence, the blockchain, nanotechnology, quantum computing, biotechnology, the Internet of Things, 3D printing and autonomous vehicles. A quick Google of "Real Estate technology" reveals that, far from being a laggard, as it is often presented, the Real Estate industry is enthusiastically adopting technology to improve how it works. You only need to look at the activity in the PropTech space, and how this is updating the way our industry does things, to realize the opportunity that already exists. However, with all the buzz it's easy to get overwhelmed, so I'd like to focus on a single thing you can do today: save money through process automation. And specifically, through robotic process automation (RPA) delivered on an as a service basis: the Robots as a Service. Staffing costs -- both salary and other ancillary costs -- form a huge part of a company's monthly operational costs. But unfortunately, companies often don't get the maximum value out of all their employees. A recent YouGov survey showed that more than nine out…
At the CRETech Conference last week, Brad Griewe of Fifth Wall Ventures and Josh Stein of Harbor discussed the three main values of a fractional ownership of real estate as being: Liquidation Premium Opportunity for Foreign Investment in US Real Estate Real Estate As The Best Way to Generate Wealth While the three items can provide value to existing real estate owners, the tokenization of real estate is bad for retail investors and makes real estate even less accessible for wealth generation. Liquidation Premium The liquidation of an asset from a private asset to a public asset is a one-time event. Once it is public, the shares of the asset have already had the price of the liquidation premium priced in. Similar to a stock IPO, once the stock is public, a retail investor does not gain any advantage in value from the liquidation premium. Additionally, private investors would need to compete with public investors to acquire real estate assets. This opposition will make it harder for private investors to purchase properties because, while they plan to keep the asset private, public investors plan to generate value by liquidating the property. Opportunity for Foreign Investment in US Real Estate Much…
AnySizeDeals recently announced venture capitalist and billionaire Tim Draper will speak at the upcoming 2018 #InnovateCRE conference in New York. The conference, which will be held on September 12, focuses on the convergence of real estate and technology.  Draper will share his insights on Blockchain and Crytocurrencies, Startup Investing and his "Cal 3" initiative to separate California into three states. Draper has invested in numerous companies including Redfin, Tesla, SpaceX, Skype and Coinbase. Continue reading here
Credit card fraud…you hear about it all the time. It is the most common way for thieves to steal your identity.  How can you protect yourself? Credit card fraud will ruin your credit and any chances of getting a loan or line of credit.  Is there a system for credit fraud detection? Are there warning signs of fraud? How many credit card scandals have been exposed?  If you suspect you're seeing signs of credit card fraud, you need to do your homework.  Arm yourself with the knowledge you need to avoid becoming a victim. Read this guide on credit card fraud detection.  Credit Card Fraud Detection There are several types of credit card fraud from simple to extremely sophisticated. You will never be able to totally protect yourself, but you can lessen your chances of becoming a victim of credit card fraud. What is Credit Card Fraud? Credit card fraud involves the use of someone's credit card information for unauthorized purchases or a cash advance.  Existing credit card accounts can be "hijacked" and used to make purchases or get cash. This is known as an account takeover.  Another type of fraud involves using a person's information to open a new credit card…
By Maithili Shinde Data is the new oil. In the new and upcoming space of AR and VR technologies, ownership of the relevant content and data to the appropriate user has always been a grey area. In a report titled "The Battle Against Access to Data," Deloitte explains how real estate service providers have two options in order to legitimately claim their right to data, one being owning and managing the appropriate technological systems themselves, which is a heavy investment to bear. Deloitte suggests the most appropriate solution would be to intensify the collaboration between AR service providers and REALTORS®. They propose that an appropriate infrastructure must be in place to hand over data rights to the relevant space owners. At the moment, it's very hard for REALTORS® to own their data and host their 3D virtual tours on their own servers. GeoCV, a company democratizing reality capture through smartphones with depth cameras, is changing that. They have established an alternate structure in relation to who owns the data and content. By operating on an Open Architecture system, companies and real estate service providers can own their data, white-label and host tours on their own servers to fully customize it to…
CREtech Returns to San Francisco for its 5th year and continues strong growth New York, NY (June 22, 2017) - Nearly 500 commercial real estate professionals were on hand at the CREtech (cretech.com) July 21st event held at Bespoke, in the epicenter of downtown San Francisco. As CREtech's second largest annual event, this remains the premier West Coast event for the commercial real estate tech sector with professionals attending from across the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia and South America. Commercial real estate owners, developers, brokers, property managers, tenants, professionals in the construction, engineering, banking, startups, VC's and more attended. The after party was held at WeWork Embarcadero Center. "Our events keep scaling and the feedback keeps getting better and that is largely due to the quality of our speakers and the leading-edge startups that are on hand," stated Michael Beckerman, CEO, CREtech. "And CREtech San Francisco raised the bar big time! It was without a doubt one of the best events I have ever attended. The caliber of the speakers, the energy, the networking and the innovation on display were truly inspiring. Thanks to all those who attended and all those that are supporting this CREtech movement!" Beckerman concluded.…
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE         CAPITAL ENGINE LAUNCHES SAAS SOLUTION FOR CAPITAL MARKETS AND PRIVATE EXCHANGE PLATFORMS New York, NY. October 31, 2018 - Capital Engine™ a financial technology company moving Real Estate and Alternative Investments to the digital world, launched their customized SaaS solution to power white label Capital Markets and Private Exchange platforms. The SaaS solution, tailored for global business & regulatory needs, provides investment professionals and advisors with a secure, interactive environment to connect and exchange information about deals – from online syndication to debt and equity marketplaces. "Securities deregulation, banking disintermediation and innovative capital raising software like Capital Engine™ are leveling the playing field by giving more people online access to the USD10 Trillion alternative investment market," said Bryan Smith, Founder and CEO. "Our business model focuses on strategic partnerships with industry experts, in setting up online marketplaces and branded platforms using our software," he added. Smith has extensive global experience in the financial technology sector and in commercial real estate, as CEO of a public REIT. Capital Engine™ is raising seed capital for additional product development, build-out of our capital markets blockchain technology and staffing product and sales teams. Funds will also be used for the proposed acquisition of a…
 Altus Group Report Reveals Rapid Acceleration of PropTech Adoption and Rise of Disintermediation as Major Trends Impacting the Commercial Real Estate Industry in 2019  Automation, use of AI and disintermediating business models having major impact on CRE industry; growing number of CRE firms are directly investing in PropTech companies  TORONTO (January 22, 2019) – Altus Group Limited ("Altus Group") (TSX: AIF), a leading provider of software, data solutions and independent advisory services to the global commercial real estate ("CRE") industry, today released the latest Altus Group CRE Innovation Report. The report provides an outlook on technology trends impacting the global CRE industry and highlights the significant acceleration in adoption of property technology ("PropTech"), the effect of disintermediating technologies, as well as a growing trend of CRE firms investing directly in PropTech companies and startups themselves.  According to the report, which is based on a global survey of 400 CRE executives at firms with assets under management ("AUM") of at least US $250 million representing a total AUM of over US $2 trillion, driving efficiency through automation is a key priority for CRE executives, and the use of AI and machine learning is approaching a critical mass. CRE firms are automating…
Your Problem: Your a CIO that is having a difficult time separating the hype around blockchain technologies and the reality. He/she has been keeping 1 eye on this technology, but not fully sure exactly how it works, what problems it can solve for you, or even simply the best way to start using this technology for the enterprise.   Maurice Kenny's Solution: Maurice Kenny will help your CIO remove the hype behind Blockchain Technologies by identifying real world use cases that solve actual business problems for your company.  
New York, NY (April 6, 2018) -- CREtech (CREtech.com), the leading event, content and connectivity platform for the commercial real estate tech sector, announced today the launch of an ongoing guest blogging feature on the recently expanded site. Over twenty of the leading thought-leaders in commercial real estate technology will be blogging on CREtech.com sharing their views, insights and best practices with the largest audience in commercial real estate technology. Some of the topics covered weekly will include: Current macro trends in commercial real estate technology Data insights from landlords and brokers Blockchain and cryptocurrency Best tech marketing practices Perspective of CRE tech-focused brokers and landlords Investment strategies and trends CoWorking trends Platforms and marketplaces And all things tech   "Our goal remains to create the one platform where there the commercial real estate industry comes to discover all things tech," stated Michael BEckerman, CEO, CREtech. "With our expanded event series, comprehensive directory, hand curated daily newsletter and now our blogging feature, the CREtech.com website has more content and information than any other site in the industry," Beckerman added. Through this additional content, users of the site will gain insight from the powerful leaders in the sector. Some of the…