The National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) new technology conference iOi (Innovation, Opportunity, and Investment) kicked off this morning at Bespoke, a sophisticated, intimate events space heavy on chic black and gray tones in downtown San Francisco.
The event began with 16 startups battling for a $15,000 cash prize and a booth at NAR’s upcoming annual conference in November, the latter dubbed “a shopping mall for Realtors” by emcee Chris Smith, co-founder of Curaytor.
Each company’s pitch was kept to a quick three minutes and ended with questions from the judges in front of about 150 attendees. The companies varied from brand-new to several years old and included:
- W+R Studios
- Flow Labs
“That’s 16 startups that are working hard for this industry. Dreamers, doers,” Smith said as the battle drew to a close.
The winner of the startup pitch battle will be announced Thursday morning.
The judges are:
- Wendy Forsythe, COO, HomeSmart International
- Alex Lange, president and CEO, Upstream
- Bill Ness, CEO, neighborhoods.com
- Adi Pavlovic, director of Innovation Labs, Keller Williams Realty International
- Alex Pelin, founder, Xspaced, TechEstate Today
- Mike Ryan, executive vice president, RE/MAX
This afternoon’s sessions will cover consumer protection issues in real estate with California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and defining the future of real estate tech with NAR CEO Bob Goldberg, among others.