Vilnius is one the 5 cities with the least office vacancies in Europe. The vacancy fluctuates between 3 and 4 per cent every quarter. However the commercial real estate market is booming, in 2017 alone office space is estimated to increase by 11 per cent. With both demand and supply surging, the developers are looking for ways to increase efficiency and remain competitive.
The first Proptech conference in the Baltics was organized by Lithuanian real estate Development association and international real estate advisory company Newsec, which is part of the Stronghold group.
‘Proptech has been a buzz word in the Nordics for a few years now. However in the Baltics this topic has not yet been consistently addressed, therefore in order to discuss global trends that are expected to disrupt real estate industry soon we initiated the first ever Proptech conference in Vilnius as a platform for property and technology professionals to interact. In order to foster growth and innovation in the region more attention needs to be devoted to the synergy between these two massive industries’ Head of Corporate Solutions at Newsec Baltics Martynas Babilas said.
Keynote speaker of the event, Head of Business at Stronghold Invest Daniel Kraft, explained that technology will indefinitely shift the power position towards the customer, while the real estate companies will have to adapt to change, in turn implementing technological innovations to reduce costs and improve customer experience.
‘Proptech is in a state where fintech was a decade ago. Major finance companies have realized that without innovation in technology they will ultimately lose customers who will choose new and more convenient services. By 2025 real estate will be the no. 1 energy user in the world. That is both a challenge and an opportunity – using big data you can save up to 40 percent of energy costs, 30 percent on utilities, while providing a better customer experience. Companies who will harness the technology will flourish, while others are likely to fail‘ Daniel Kraft said.
According to Tomi Ventovouri, Head of Strategic Development and Digitalization at Newsec, real estate industry doesn’t have to alter its business model completely, change happens by watching innovation and adjusting it to your needs or by acquiring start-ups that can improve your business process or provide a solution to a specific problem.
‘The industry of commercial real estate is highly complex, there is a number of players and the process of acquiring an asset is inevitably very long. If a start-up can offer a proven technology to simplify the real estate transferring process without losing quality, it is very likely a major enterprise will acquire the start-up and integrate its technology’ T. Ventovouri said.