by Property Forum | Report

Despite the difficulties caused by COVID-19, the year 2020 was a turning point, in a positive sense, for most Czech Proptech companies. as the pandemic situation created strong pressure to automate and digitize processes using modern technologies. These technologies include machine reading, artificial intelligence or the Internet of Things. Many companies have expanded to foreign markets, where Czech solutions for residential and commercial development are receiving positive responses. The Czech-Slovak Association of PropTech Companies has received feedback from 5 progressive companies.


Sharry

The company, which has developed an integrated software platform for digital systems for office, residential and other buildings, more than doubled its turnover in 2020, even though many of its projects have slowed down due to the pandemic. The company also won a contract to implement software and mobile applications in 23 skyscrapers in New York (including the iconic One Vanderbilt). Furthermore, last year, Sharry became the global technology partner of HID Origo.

"We are registering an enormous demand from our customers for contactless solutions, such as mobile access or our product innovation – the ability to call an elevator directly from a smartphone avoiding the need to touch shared surfaces. More and more clients are also in demand for our data analysis tools to help them strengthen the tenant's confidence in office comeback," says Vlad Mašinský, Strategic Partnership & Business Development Lead.

Realpad

The software provider for residential developers is now operating in 12 European markets as it entered Romania, Lithuania, and Estonia in 2020. 2020 was a very successful year for the company. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, it expects year-on-year sales growth of 80%. They are working on their first co-living project and have valuable information on the development of real estate prices. According to Realpad, the share of buyers that buy for investment reasons has increased to 40%.

“During this year, in cooperation with the development company Corwin, we managed to implement a pilot project to digitize the handover of apartments. It was the onset of the digitization of the COVID-19 pandemic that accelerated significantly, and we are registering increased demand for the product from foreign and local developers,” says Marián Škvarek, Founder and CEO of Realpad.

Spaceflow

Integrating data, technology, and people, Spaceflow helps landlords to go through digital transformation to finally connect buildings with their occupiers. The company delivers an operating system that integrates both physical and digital aspects, and community engagement to create an elevated experience for occupants in residential and commercial buildings in 17 markets.

"We are monitoring the increased interest in technologies enabling contactless access, whether it is building entrance and contactless door opening, cashless payments, monitoring energy consumption, air quality, occupancy or contactless reservations – all with connection to the building from one mobile application we provide," says Petr Bořuta, who is responsible for marketing at Spaceflow.

Flatio

The company provides medium-term housing rentals in 17 markets. This year, Flatio bought NOMADX's activities in the Portuguese market, where it now offers 2,000 housing opportunities. Due to COVID-19, it faced a spring income halt, yet it is growing at a double-digit rate compared to last year  It appears that a large number of residential property owners are abandoning the format of short-term leases and looking for medium-term ones.

Upvest

Through its online platform, Upvest offers investment opportunities in the field of real estate crowdfunding. In the midst of an ongoing pandemic, the company managed to achieve two significant milestones in 2020, gradually strengthening its position within the Czech market. With an increase of 98 %, the company has doubled the volume of invested projects on its platform, exceeding a total of 3,574 investments secured. Secondly, Upvest partnered with Komerční bank through its subsidiary KB Smart Solutions in July 2020. KB Smart Solutions focuses on the investment and development of fintech companies and entered the company by acquiring an 18,9 % share. By doing so, KB has validated Upvest's product and development. The obtained capital is now being implemented so as to further advance growth and improve the services offered.

The vision of the Czech-Slovak PropTech Association is to become a place for the growth of local PropTech startups and local real estate companies looking for innovative solutions and ideas. Its ultimate goal is to increase the efficiency and customer friendliness of real estate.