We sat down with Matt Partridge, Founder and CEO of Infabode, a provider for a one-stop shop for real estate industry research and insights. Infabode provides a free platform that enables users to analyse global industry sectors. Content partners also receive free analytics on the reach of their content.
Matt shares his views below on the PropTech industry, technology innovations at Infabode, collaborations with other PropTech’s and an insight into Infabodes previous funding and current funding plans…
Have you seen a shift in attitudes towards technology in the industry?
I think there’s been a massive shift in attitudes over the last six years, which is how long I’ve been in the industry. I remember attending MIPIM Cannes in 2015 and I think there were only two panels on technology and the PropTech stands were in a completely different building. The big real estate companies are increasingly using technology and it’s not uncommon for them to partner with multiple PropTech startups. The idea of partnering with a small technology business in 2013/14 (when we were getting started) was quite rare, in fact it took Infabode two years to get ten content partners! Over the last three years we’ve grown that to nearly 800 and that’s not just because Infabode has become more well known, it has a lot to do with the changing attitudes of the big players in our market.
Can you tell us more about any technological innovations you are working on at Infabode?
Infabode is a simple product in that we partner with companies to distribute their industry information and users customise the content that they want to have access to. From a technology perspective it’s much more complicated, with the storing of over 500,000 pages of industry information, a user activity table that has over a billion rows and an analytics product that allows companies to see how their content is performing. Combine this with the demand from other technology partners who want to integrate the Infabode data into their own product via our API, and the number of technology services we maintain and improve becomes fairly complex.
Can you give us an insight into Infabode’s API integrations and collaborations with other PropTech’s?
A couple of years ago a large technology business was interested in potentially purchasing Infabode. They wanted to feed the content from our partners into their own existing product. This is where the idea came from to build an API that would be accessible to those wanting to do something similar. The API works best when partnering with a company that has additional data on a user that can enhance the customisation of the Infabode content. A great example of this is Coyote, who use the Infabode API to show their users anything happening around a particular asset. Infabode are set to announce another big API partner in the next couple of weeks and we expect to roll the API out across the industry over the next couple of years.
How has Infabode been funded and what are your current funding plans?
Infabode was initially funded by family and friends, along with some of the people that I’d been working for after university. When the business moved into focussing purely on real estate, we were backed by a couple of well known names from the sector who struggled with the problems that we were trying to solve. Over the years most of the funding has come from individuals from the industry- we’ve facilitated these angel investments through two crowdfunding rounds, although our 2018 fundraising also included an investment from Coyote. Infabode is now looking at raising a Series A round, which is likely to include both corporates and VCs.
Lastly, where do you see the industry in 2-5 years?
There will undoubtedly be some consolidation, which we’ve started to see through some recent acquisitions from CoStar, MRI and Altus Group. Of course with any startup boom like we’ve seen in recent years, there will be number of PropTech companies going out of business. But I think the biggest difference will be that traditional real estate companies will start to look more and more like technology businesses. They will do this through acquisitions, investments in their own technology and through partnerships. I’m a big believer that the UKPA will have a very important role to play in the transition towards an increasingly tech enabled industry.
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