The multi-trillion dollar
Business model innovation, data accessibility and the proliferation of mobile, SaaS and other cloud-native software have already given rise to a cohort of tech unicorns that sit amongst the world’s most influential real estate companies. Emerging technologies and growing capabilities across machine learning, 5G, IoT and more — coupled with fast-moving regulations and dramatic cost structure changes — have opened up opportunities for the next wave of innovation across a wide set of multi-billion dollar real estate verticals and sub-verticals.
And despite WeWork’s implosion garnering countless headlines in the real estate and technology worlds, venture dollars are continuing to spill into real estate tech (or proptech) companies at a rapidly increasing rate. Just upwards of $16 billion in venture capital has flowed into real estate-related startups in 2019 alone, according to data from Crunchbase and Pitchbook, with major fundraises happening across industrial, commercial, residential, and financial categories.
If we follow the money, it’s clear that more and more leading VCs are turning to real estate tech or proptech for ripe opportunities for juicy returns and disruption on a global scale. Given the countless subsectors where exciting new startups are popping up, we asked more than 20 leading real estate VCs who work at firms that span early to growth stages to share where they see opportunity within the colossal real estate category. For purposes of length and clarity, responses have been edited and split up into part oneand part two of this survey (in no particular order). In part one of our survey, we hear from:
- Zach Aarons, MetaProp
- Pete Flint, NFX
- Ryan Freedman, Corigin Ventures
- Constance Freedman, Moderne Ventures
- Tyler Sosin, Menlo Ventures
- Jeff Crowe, Norwest Venture Partners
- Micah Kotch, URBAN-X
- Merritt Hummer, Bain Capital Ventures
- Kia Nejatian, Plug and Play
- MJ Cootsona, Plug and Play
- Robin Godenrath, Picus Capital
Answers have been edited for length and clarity.