London-based startup Aprao has released a beta version of its development appraisal tool to 650 companies.
The tool is set to reduce the time it takes to put together a detailed development appraisal and feasibility report. Its estimated to take two hours to put such a report together, but Aprao estimates that its tool can reduce this time down to 10 minutes.
Aprao’s features include:
- Dashboard reporting to keep track of opportunities, update and share appraisals, run multiple scenarios, and get an up-to-date snapshot of the entire portfolio of sites
- Quick, highly-detailed financial appraisals
- Create development cash flows from financial appraisals with no formatting or manual input required. Schedule the purchase, construction, sale and refinance to create an accurate timeline
- One click feasibility reports, which can be downloaded as PDFs or shared as a link.
According to Daniel Norman, founder and CEO of Aprao, this is “the first-time land, construction, marketing, and sales teams can all work together on the same appraisal.”
Currently, the software is available as three packages, essential, professional, and enterprise for different business stages.
- Essential is marketed towards individual users and is £99 per month
- Professional is for growing businesses with two users and is £299 per month
- Enterprise is aimed at teams of ten and is £1,499 per month.
Aprao has spent 18 months in the development stage. During this time, it has worked in ‘stealth mode’ with a holding website to attract potential beta-testing companies, which has allowed people to sign up to a waiting list to find out more.
Prior to the beta launch, the tool was in testing with 50 real estate companies. This stage helped Aprao collect market research data and test its features.
Norman said: “Our software will bring considerable efficiencies to the property industry. I would receive so many appraisals when working as a development finance lender
that would contain an error in some form. Usually appraisals were spreadsheet based and it is far too easy to mis-calculate a formula or overtype a cell. Aprao avoids this by ensuring the appraisal is accurate.
“By having every appraisal in the consistent format, it allows real estate companies to make quicker and informed decisions on anything from which sites to purchase, to which construction methods to use, to which funder to finance with.
“As Aprao is cloud based the efficiencies are endless. For example, a land director appraising a site can now collaborate with their colleagues in sales, marketing and construction. This also allows the ability to share appraisals with other stakeholders such as lenders, investors, or professionals by simply sharing a link.”
Aprao currently partners with property marketplace LendInvest, developer Careys New Homes, and design house Fusion to help further develop the technology.
LendInvest has worked with Aprao on the tool for over a year. Norman said having LendInvest as a customer is “an excellent milestone for Aprao. As our first lender-customer, our other developer-customers are now able to send deals to LendInvest by simply sharing a link to their appraisal. LendInvest can then review the development for funding faster than ever before, which creates massive efficiencies in the way that development funding works.”
Leanne Smith, director of development finance at LendInvest, said: “By using Aprao, we are able to turn cases around a lot quicker with all of the information residing on one system.”
Aprao is currently building its ‘innovation board’ from a selection of property companies with whom it will work with to test new features and concepts that it hopes will make advancements in technology and property.
In February this year, Aprao received a £500,000 investment in its seed round. This was led by German VC firm Surplus Invest, and included angel investments from Robert Grigg, executive chairman of Hampshire Trust Bank and Conan Lauterpacht, the former VP of corporate development at Altus Group. Specialist proptech fund Pi Labs also provided a follow-on commitment.
PlaceTech reached out to Max Bentham, director at developer Capital & Centric, to see what he thought of the technology: “Appraisal documents can be enormously sensitive and so ensuring that assumptions are properly qualified is critical for developers. Having tools that can model a number of options and and outcomes quickly is certainly something that’s beneficial. Linking to live or recent data on cost and value, in markets that are fast moving would be a useful tool too.”
There are other companies offering services similar to Aprao. New York City-based startup Honest Buildings, which was acquired by cloud-based construction company Procore earlier this year, provides a platform which creates unified financials and cost tracking from the investor or lender to its final spend at the subcontractor or material provider level.