In a sign of the increasing global reach of the real estate industry, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) announced Wednesday that it is expanding its tech accelerator program to companies outside the U.S.
The program, dubbed “REACH” (sometimes styled “REach”) will first expand internationally to Australia. In a statement, NAR, the largest real estate trade group in the U.S. with around 1.3 million members, explained that by expanding the program beyond this country, the organization “aims to recruit and accelerate the most promising new technologies in the real estate industry and nurture success across the world.”
Bob Goldberg, NAR’s CEO, added that it will further the trade organization’s “vision of creating a dynamic, competitive real estate market that will help NAR advance our members-first mission and drive innovation in real estate technology around the world.”
REACH — which first launched in 2013 and is part of NAR’s Second Century Ventures investment fund — has worked with dozens of companies over the years including House Canary, BoxBrownie and BombBomb. The goal is to provide promising new companies with training, networking and other resources to further their growth.
Earlier this year, NAR also expanded REACH to include an accelerator specifically focused on commercial real estate.
Shelli Trung will now lead REACH’s expansion into Australia. Trung has spent years in the real estate technology investment spaces, and also previously worked at the Queensland University of Technology Creative Enterprise Australia. She said Wednesday that she was honored to join Second Century.
“Much like the U.S. marketplace, technology and capital are revolutionizing real estate at a rapid pace in Australia,” Trung added in a statement. “REACH Australia is a unique opportunity to accelerate growth in emerging technology companies and entrepreneurs who will have the greatest impact on real estate now and in the future.”
The expansion of REACH comes as numerous institutions in real estate increasingly focus on the global market. Big-name U.S. companies including Redfin and Zillow have recently pushed into Canada, for example. And some established brokerages have gone even further; in May, Keller Williams announced it was expanding into Morocco and in June, Sotheby’s International Realty opened an office in Qatar.
Meanwhile, German franchisor Engel & Völkers recently announced plans to expand its U.S. operations.
NAR did not indicate Wednesday where else it might eventually expand REACH.
However, in a statement Second Century managing director Dave Garland explained that by going global the program “will increase the depth of our exceptional network of real estate industry professionals, strategic partners, investors, mentors, and innovators responsible for shaping change.”
NAR is will begin taking applications for the Australian version of REACH on July 15.
Correction: Applications to the Australian version of REACH will be accepted beginning on July 15. This post originally states applications would be accepted up to that date.
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