SAN FRANCISCO — Bimbo’s 365 Club was packed on Thursday night for the inaugural Innovator Bash, honoring and recognizing the most innovative companies in real estate during the Inman Connect San Francisco conference.

Dozens of finalists in six categories were parsed and examined to select what Inman believes are the most innovative companies in real estate today. Two runners-up in each category were also named; Inman also selected an Innovator of the Year and, for the first time ever, presented the Nate Ellis Giving Back Award to the individual in real estate who gives more than he or she takes.

“These people companies are on the forefront of change in the industry,” said publisher Brad Inman. “By consistently asking what can be better about the industry and trying to make their dreams reality, they are pushing every one of us to view the industry using a different lens.”

Here are the winners.

Most Innovative Technology

Cloud MLX

Runners up: CoreLogic Trestle, Trulia’s Awareness API

Most Innovative Brokerage


Runners up: Pardee Properties, Hawaii Life

Most Innovative Agent

Ben Bacal

Runners up: Leigh Brown, Greg Fischer

Most Innovative Real Estate Company


Runners up: AgentDesks, Nestigator

Most Innovative Marketing Campaign

Terry Waggoner’s open house videos

Runners up: Coldwell Banker’s X-Men mansion,’s hidden house

Most Innovative MLS or Association

San Francisco Association of Realtors

Runners up: California Association of Realtors, REColorado

Innovator of the Year

Eric Wu, CEO at Opendoor

Nate Ellis Giving Back Award Winner

Jim Walberg

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