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CRETech South Africa

CRETech

CRETech is short for commercial real estate (CRE) technology, or commercial property technology.

This term covers startups offering technologically innovative products or new business models for the CRE industry. I.e. it  excludes residential property.

Commercial property technology plus residential property technology makes up PropTech. In other words, PropTech is an umbrella term encompassing both disciplines (residential tech and CRE tech).

Technology solutions in the space of CRE are aimed, generally, at solving two problems

  1. Processing large volumes of complex data, and
  2. Making processes more efficient.

CRETech, aimed, primarily at businesses, is increasingly being served in a “Software as a Service” (SaaS) model.

CRE, covering generally office, industrial and retail property assets, is significantly more complicated than residential property.

For such solutions to be effective, both data (living in a high IP barrier to entry domain), and enterprise software (complexity explained here) need to be combined in one product.

Examples of commercial real estate tech solutions

CoStar, founded in 1987 and listed on the NASDAQ, is probably the world’s most mature commercial real estate solution.

MRI, as of 2019 in an aggressive acquisitions phase, is also a dominant provider of these solutions globally. From Nov 2018 to February 2019, MRI has acquired CTM Software, Rental History Reports, IPM Software, Thesaurus Technology and TCAM LLC. Prior to this, in South Africa, MRI has acquired both MDA and PropSys/Nicor, making it Africa’s largest provider of property management software. Previous acquisitions include CML Software (July 18), HAPPY Software (Mar 18), eCondoSystems (Oct 17), HAB Inc (Oct 17), Tenmast (Oct 17) and, significantly, Qube (Oct 17).

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