The commercial real estate industry comes online - by Andreas Senie

September 18, 2015 - Connecticut
Andreas Senie, EAC Commercial Andreas Senie, EAC Commercial

From property tours to client relationship management the industry is evolving. The availability of information coupled with new technology entering the field have made commercial real estate more expansive then ever.

Whether it’s prospecting, sourcing, networking, listing, and transacting like many other industries the commercial real estate industry has begun to shine like a beacon through online venues and platforms. The time of calling “Broker Joe” who is the guru for “Main Street, USA” is fading farther and farther into the past. Consumers/clients want more information at their fingertips while brokers have more information on their markets than ever before.

Commercial real estate has been historically a fragmented industry. Information, networks, and opportunities that were impossible to access in a timely manner even today are over accessible filled with outdated information.

From funding platforms, capital raising platforms, investment listing services, sophisticated business development tools, syndication sites, crowd funding, and networking, time is in short supply and professionals are even more tasked with learning, updating, and networking although these sites provide many laser focused results, that then need to be sorted, validated, etc...

Make no mistake, there is no replacement to on the street knowledge; but what if you took that knowledge, added in market intelligence, networking tools, client relationship management tools and brought them all together into one place.

With the shift in technology, we are at a point in history, where information, networks, opportunities, are available in such a saturated format that checking your email has become a daunting task of dizzying disruption.

If you happen to be a “techie” subscribed to such services as Fundrise, Koss Resource, Loopnet, Costar, Fundrise, Merrill Data site, etc... the time involved simply tracking, updating, collating information from these platforms takes an entirely separate set of employees, not to mention the outrageous costs of these platforms themselves.

So what has to happen for continued growth? Our client’s will still want more information, we will need more information which leaves us with the only option of evolution of a historically fragmented industry into a network of unified information exchange.

The only real light at the end of that tunnel, or at least the brightest light I have seen: The RealConnex platform is innovative, cutting edge and already a game changer. RealConnex works 24/7, sourcing opportunities in an industry wide inclusionary platform, bringing you the opportunities while bringing your opportunities to others that may otherwise be missed. Five impressive tools including the marketplace, client relationship manager, secure collaboration rooms, and internal/external messaging system power the RealConnex Platform. Taking it further, they offer funding sources in the form of Club Priv, syndication features, a fund for opportunities, and much more.

If you look to other platforms you see more of the past imposed on the future. Separation or segregation of information continues with:  Fundrise – a crowdfunding platform is targeted at all commercial real estate professionals. They offer capital raising services, investment opportunities, crowdfunding, and networking. Kossresource – a commercial real estate directory offers networking and directory services only. Honest Buildings – allows you services searching, sophisticated business development tools, and networking. Loopnet  – offers investment services, but nothing else.

That is the short list of platforms with over 200 crowdfunding platforms to be live by the end of the year like this industry there will be many options but only a few global players.

Andreas Senie is managing partner at EAC Commercial at The Higgins Group, Fairfield, Conn.

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