My proptech life | Joe Averill, transactions and asset management at OBI
What piece of tech has made the biggest difference to your job in recent years?
At OBI, we invest in a lot of technology and place our clients at the focal point of every innovation we make, to deliver added value and to ensure we are at the forefront of our industry. In 2017 OBI made an investment into a Virtual and Augmented Reality platform, Revere. This investment strengthens our proposition as we are able to share the concept of our clients latest developments in advance which enables occupiers to buy in to the vision before the space is delivered. This really helps my team and I to communicate available options coming to market in the near future to those businesses that are exploring a potential relocation. We are also able to walk them through the building with the technology and identify workspaces which may be fit for their requirement.
If you could invent one new piece of tech, what would it be?
A piece of tech that we have recently talked about developing is a professional networking platform. Over the years we have been fortunate enough to create a strong network and we wanted all of our clients, contacts and friends to benefit from it. We envisaged the platform to allow our network of CEO’s, directors and influencers to share high quality content with their latest thought leadership pieces and market insights. We talked around the idea of creating a diverse range of events to bring together the community and to create opportunities for members through the ability to share their latest business requirements. The idea has been discussed thoroughly internally and we’ve recently been given the green light to develop it. Keep your eyes peeled for our latest piece of tech – ‘Calico’.
What one new/developing technology are you watching closely?
There are a number of emerging technologies which are disrupting our industry including Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, digital connectivity, amongst others. However, one technology we are keeping a close eye on is blockchain. The blockchain technology is impacting a number of industries including banking, healthcare, legal and also our own, real estate. Earlier this year, the first UK residential sale took place across blockchain platform ‘clicktopurchase‘. The technology has the potential to shape the future of the real estate industry and change the way we work. The disruption here is that trust is established through collaboration and code, as opposed to a central authority. We need to keep an eye on this as it could completely revolutionize how we undertake transactions within real estate.
Joe Averill, oversees transactions and asset management at OBI property.