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Embracing the Future of Blockchain in Real Estate

Technology is expanding our ability to collect, analyze and transfer information in ways not previously imagined. From building sensors to smart contracts to cryptocurrency transfers, blockchain technology is shaping up to be a powerhouse and a major disruptor to the real estate industry and the world.

What is blockchain? It is a distributed digital ledger that changes the way information is stored and shared between parties with no central database to hack. It resides on a virtual network, not within a single organization and uses encryption with both private and public keys for access. This distributed ledger approach includes a time stamp and stores value exchanges in a permanent record, making it extremely difficult (some say impossible) to alter a record as it would require rewriting the history of the record with all participants watching.

Bitcoin is one of the most recognized applications of blockchain technology. Others include Bitshares, Ethereum for smart contracts, and Abra, a smart wallet application. Platforms built on modified blockchain technology are being explored that can pair smart contracts, payments and property details on a shared system in real time. International investment settlement transfers currently can take three days or more; blockchain technology can reduce the time to mere minutes. The impact of this change to transactions is nothing short of extraordinary.

On the continuum of technology-based evolution, we’ve experienced the Internet of Things moving toward the Internet of Everything. With blockchain technology driving Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency applications, we are rapidly moving to the Internet of Finance. The financial services industry likes the security and other features of the technology, and some major players have already invested heavily in it. One large financial institution has more than 35 patents either approved or pending based on this emerging technology.

Regulators are looking at the technology with interest, and a Blockchain Innovation Center opened in September 2016 in Washington, D.C. as a joint venture between the Chamber of Digital Commerce and Technology Incubator 1776. The center is focused on fintech applications, aiding regulators and governmental agencies at all levels to understand the benefits of the technology and address issues including asset registry, cybersecurity and identity management.

How fast is this new technology moving? The World Economic Forum estimated in August of last year that about 80 percent of top global banks will have launched blockchain projects by 2017, describing the technology as the future “beating heart” of the financial sector.

A gathering of U.S.-based banks are proactively engaged in building a blockchain-inspired platform and are driving an international initiative through the R3 Consortium. This commercial venture includes more than 70 of the largest financial institutions globally with the heaviest concentration of members from North America.

Blockchain is based on a single source of truth, and mandates a standardized approach to the collection and distribution of information that populates the ledger and drives decision making. Consistency and transparency are an integral part of this approach. The efforts of the R3 Consortium demonstrate financial institutions have firmly planted a stake in the ground, and intend to identify ways to monetize this new technology.

Are you prepared? Standards implementation is a critical step to prepare for this new technology that will no doubt change the way business is conducted globally.

The potential impact of emerging technologies including artificial intelligence, blockchain and others on our industry cannot be ignored. Other industries including financial services have made firm and funded commitments to explore how these technologies can be implemented in their business, with collaborations formed that have already completed a variety of pilot projects.

There is an inherent danger in doing nothing to prepare for the changes ahead. Business plans need to include initiatives that address these emerging technologies and explores their impact and potential application to the real estate industry. It’s time for a collaborative and proactive approach that ensures these emerging technologies can be harnessed to best meet the needs of the industry. The stakes are high. Standards, effective data governance and emerging technologies are forever intertwined as we move forward to explore the possibilities.

Blockchain is just one of the CRE Tech 5.0 topics that will be presented by thought leaders at Realcomm | IBcon 2017 on June 14-15 in San Diego.

Lisa Stanley, CEO, OSCRE
Lisa Stanley is CEO of OSCRE International. She drives strategy for the member-based organization, and works with a variety of constituents in corporate real estate, investment firms, service providers, software developers, consulting firms and other member-based associations. She brings over 20 years’ experience in the real estate industry in strategic planning, asset and property management, real estate operations, brokerage, compliance and advocacy.

This Week’s Sponsor

Now in its fourth decade, Yardi® is committed to the design, development and support of software for real estate investment management and property management. With the Yardi Commercial Suite™, Yardi Multifamily Suite™, Yardi Investment Suite™ and Yardi Orion™ Business Intelligence, the Yardi Voyager® platform is a complete real estate management solution. It includes operations, accounting and ancillary processes and services with portfolio-wide business intelligence and platform-wide mobility. Yardi is based in Santa Barbara, Calif., and serves clients worldwide from offices in North America, Asia, Australia, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, visit www.yardi.com.

Realcomm News

DIGIE AWARDS CALL FOR NOMINATIONS: Due By June 1!

Realcomm has been presenting the "Digie" Award (short for Commercial Real Estate Digital Innovation Awards) since 1999.

The purpose of the Digie Award is to recognize those companies, real estate projects, technologies and people that have gone above and beyond to positively impact our industry through the use of technology, automation and innovation!

In 2012, we created separate award categories for Realcomm and IBcon to more clearly address the difference between automating real estate business processes and creating intelligent building systems, buildings, portfolios and cities.

For more information on award categories and/or to nominate an outstanding individual, project or organization, visit:
Realcomm Digie Awards
IBcon Digie Awards

UPCOMING REALCOMM WEBINARS

CORPORATE REAL ESTATE & Technology – The Importance of Developing a STRATEGY - 10/24/2019

The Corporate Real Estate industry has quickly gone from constantly resizing the corporate real estate portfolio based on the everchanging business needs of the corporation, to having to understand and deal with a myriad of issues relating to technology, automation and innovation. Not only do CRE professionals need to understand things such as IWMS, intelligent buildings, the smart workplace, AI, VR/AR and other emerging technologies, they also need to understand the fundamental shift on how we use space. Technology which is enabling mobility has shifted the landscape. This webinar will feature some of the most innovative professionals discussing the importance of developing a comprehensive Corporate Real Estate portfolio strategy around the concept of Digital Transformation.

headshot for Jim Young
Jim Young Realcomm
Jim Young Co-Founder & CEO Founder of Realcomm Conference Group, an education organization that produces Realcomm, IBcon and CoRE Tech, the world's leading conferences on techno
headshot for Jim Young
Jim Young
Co-Founder & CEO
Realcomm
LinkedIn

Founder of Realcomm Conference Group, an education organization that produces Realcomm, IBcon and CoRE Tech, the world's leading conferences on technology, automated business solutions, intelligent buildings and energy efficiency for the commercial and corporate real estate industry. As CEO, Jim interacts with some of the largest companies globally pertaining to some of the most advanced and progressive next generation real estate projects under development.

headshot for Chuck Niswonger
Chuck Niswonger NiceNets Consulting
Chuck Niswonger President Chuck Niswonger has over 30 years of successful leadership experience in technology-related roles that range from operating his own consulting company
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Chuck Niswonger
President
NiceNets Consulting

Chuck Niswonger has over 30 years of successful leadership experience in technology-related roles that range from operating his own consulting company (www.nicenets.com) to directing the IT strategy of a real estate investment management firm to manufacturing and technology-enabled education. Chuck has also been the chair of the Realcomm Investment Management (IM) Advisory Council for the last ten years, managing content selection for the conference educational sessions, IM forums, workshops and webinars.

headshot for Emmanuel Daniel
Emmanuel Daniel Microsoft
Emmanuel Daniel Director, Applied Innovation & Incubation, Smart Buildings & Campuses Emmanuel Daniel is responsible for building and delivering the Digital Transformation strategy for campuses across Microsoft and leads a global multid
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Emmanuel Daniel
Director, Applied Innovation & Incubation, Smart Buildings & Campuses
Microsoft

Emmanuel Daniel is responsible for building and delivering the Digital Transformation strategy for campuses across Microsoft and leads a global multidisciplinary team of architects and experience designers. He builds experiences that merge technology with the built environment, leading to the formation of spaces that respond to the needs of its users. He is also accountable for identifying, building and implementing the next generation of products that will make smarter and sustainable buildings.

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Paul Maximuk Ford Land
Paul Maximuk Product Owner, Smart Building Technologies & Controls Paul Maximuk is the Product Owner as well as a technical SME at Ford Land, leading all BMS and controls integrations globally. He has over 30 years of
headshot for Paul Maximuk
Paul Maximuk
Product Owner, Smart Building Technologies & Controls
Ford Land
LinkedIn

Paul Maximuk is the Product Owner as well as a technical SME at Ford Land, leading all BMS and controls integrations globally. He has over 30 years of experience in the industry managing multiple types of energy systems and specializing in strategic smart building implementation and management. Paul’s expertise in the built environment spans real estate assets from large industrial facilities to Class A office buildings.

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Ronna Davis Commscope
Ronna Davis Strategy and Technology, Enterprise Building and Campus Ronna Davis has been in the networking and telecommunication industry for 23 years. She has been with CommScope for over 13 years and has held positio
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Ronna Davis
Strategy and Technology, Enterprise Building and Campus
Commscope

Ronna Davis has been in the networking and telecommunication industry for 23 years. She has been with CommScope for over 13 years and has held positions in sales, channel and product line management. She is currently on CommScope’s Strategy and Technology Team for Buildings and Campuses. Previous to CommScope she worked in the design and construction of telecommunications networks for eight years and in wholesale distribution for two years. She studied marketing and is a LEED Green Associate.

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Ron Victor IoTium
Ron Victor Founder & CEO Ron Victor is a Silicon Valley based technology entrepreneur with 20 years of experience and expertise launching new ventures at start-ups and fortune
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Ron Victor
Founder & CEO
IoTium

Ron Victor is a Silicon Valley based technology entrepreneur with 20 years of experience and expertise launching new ventures at start-ups and fortune 1000 technology companies. To-date he has enabled raising more than $30Million in start-up capital for multiple start-ups in silicon-valley. Ron has founded and led three companies to-date with successful exits. His latest venture is IoTium Inc. – a Silicon Valley start-up that provides a secure, cloud-managed, easy-to-deploy software defined network infrastructure for all IoT verticals.

headshot for Marc Petock
Marc Petock Lynxspring
Marc Petock Chief Marketing & Communications Officer Marc is a pioneer in leading the Intelligent/Smart Buildings and M2M movements pushing the industry forward and has contributed to transforming and ch
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Marc Petock
Chief Marketing & Communications Officer
Lynxspring
LinkedIn

Marc is a pioneer in leading the Intelligent/Smart Buildings and M2M movements pushing the industry forward and has contributed to transforming and changing the Intelligent Buildings and M2M (now IoT) industries. As Chief Marketing and Communications Officer for Lynxspring Marc leads corporate and product marketing, strategy, brand management, public relations and communications that support the company’s strategic and growth initiatives.

headshot for Brent Boekestein
Brent Boekestein Vintra
Brent Boekestein Founder and CEO Brent Boekestein is the CEO of Vintra, Inc., a leading video analytics company from Silicon Valley that uses artificial intelligence to transform any
headshot for Brent Boekestein
Brent Boekestein
Founder and CEO
Vintra

Brent Boekestein is the CEO of Vintra, Inc., a leading video analytics company from Silicon Valley that uses artificial intelligence to transform any video surveillance into actionable and tailored intelligence. Forward-thinking enterprises and public safety organizations like Sacramento City, NYC DOI, Sacramento County, and more use Vintra’s solutions to organize, analyze, and derive critical insights from overwhelming amounts of stored and live video.