This PropTech Company Wants You To Be Able To Sell Commercial Real Estate In Weeks Or Days
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A new PropTech company launched in February is looking to cut the amount of time it takes to sell commercial property from months down to weeks — or even a single day.
Cloudscraper looks to bring together all the parties involved in a deal — sellers, buyers, lenders, brokers and lawyers — on a single platform, which could cut the amount of time needed to complete transactions.
The seller of a property can anonymously input information about an asset they want to sell and send that information to other Cloudscraper users to call for indicative bids, to discover what the market might pay for it. Other parties that might look to be involved in the deal, such as lenders and advisors, could also submit their interest.
If the seller likes the offers it receives, it can press ahead, set up a data room and undertake a full sale.
“The current sales process can easily take six months or more,” Cloudscraper Chief Financial Officer Matt Webster told Bisnow. “Appointing a broker to find an indicative value for a building, then going to potential buyers to get indicative interest, then setting up a data room, calling for bids, the bidders approaching lenders and then those lenders undertaking due diligence, then finally selecting a buyer and having them undertake due diligence; it is a very laborious process and technology can change that.”
The company has created algorithms similar to those used by websites like Amazon or Pandora. Investors can put in their investment criteria and the platform will send deals that fit that criteria and filter out those that do not. The system can be tailored to suit the needs of individual members of a team.
Cloudscraper has been trialled in Germany for the past year with more than 100 parties using the platform, and real deals were undertaken using it.
The business has now formally launched and is looking to scale up the number of users, an important factor in how useful the platform is, Webster said.
The platform costs £95 a month, but brokers and advisors are able to use it for free, to encourage greater usage.
He said that as things like leases and loan documents became more standardised, the platform could transact even quicker.
“At the moment it could be done in weeks, but as time goes on those different parts of the transaction will take hours rather than weeks.”
Webster is the former head of global real estate finance at HSBC. Cloudscraper was set up by Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Moses Gottlieb in 2014.