John Macdonald3

Recognyte appoints new CEO

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Karl Tomusk

Resolute Asset Management’s real estate software company Recognyte has appointed John Macdonald as CEO.

With a background in European systemic banks and investment funds, Macdonald will lead the company in its next stage of development and expansion.

What is Recognyte?

Recognyte’s core product, Data Scout, helps asset managers get to grips with – and enhance – the data they have about their real estate portfolios.

The software started its life as an in-house platform for Resolute Asset Management, which specialises in working with clients that have large portfolios of “unintended properties”, such as banks that have foreclosed on assets or own portfolios of non-performing loans.

PlaceTech spoke to outgoing CEO Richard Henshall at CREtech London about the product.

Henshall said a typical example of Resolute’s clients would be a bank in southern Europe with significant NPLs. He said: “Typically, they have terrible data, and that data is spread across multiple different systems.

“So the initial challenge is actually to pull that data out and then work out what goes with which property.”

By using machine learning and natural language processing, the software can pull relevant information from documents, determine the quality of assets through image recognition and define what some assets are through geolocation.

Henshall said: “Sometimes people will discover that they thought they had a mortgage over a building and in fact all they have is a vacant piece of land. One particular case, it was a cliff.”

From there, Recognyte adds “various analytical tools”, such as automatic valuations and liquidity models to help asset managers understand how and when to sell an asset.

What else does it do?

Besides handling asset data, Recognyte also has tools to produce business plans for individual properties. Users can set up tasks and alerts, giving access to those to all relevant parties, whether they might be lawyers or real estate agents.

Recently, Recognyte expanded into the wider commercial real estate market, launching a tool to manage large commercial assets.

“We found a lot of the systems out there are really just financial reporting tools. They’re really just extended spreadsheets,” Henshall said.

Recognyte has combined its data product with its reporting and workflow tools in order to give landlords oversight on what operational tasks need to be completed, what lease maturities are coming up, when pre-leases have to be done and so on.

Next steps

With Macdonald taking over from Henshall (Henshall joked that the intention of his role was to find “someone better” to replace him), the company is focused on its product pipeline.

Henshall said: “We’ve got a pretty extensive product roadmap… particularly focused on giving clients much greater ability to customise themselves, to be able to adjust the workflows, to be able to adjust the recording so they’re not dependent on a template we tell them they have to have.”

Commenting on his appointment, Macdonald said: “The global property industry can benefit enormously from embracing data-driven solutions at scale. The use of AI-fuelled analytics can create powerful insights to help companies across the industry differentiate themselves from the pack.

“The Recognyte team have used their experience and insight as practitioners to create truly end-user focused solutions that maximise visibility, value and efficiency across the real estate lifecycle. The firm’s unmatched AI technology, coupled with growing industry demand, means that Recognyte is in a hugely exciting position to become the market-leader. I’m delighted to be joining at this time.”

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