Compass CEO Robert Reffkin revealed Wednesday on CNBC that Compass has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on research and development for its technology platform. The global pandemic, according to Reffkin, is accelerating the consumer want for a tech-enabled experience, which Reffkin believes puts Compass in a position of strength.

“We’re seeing an acceleration in the shift from traditional companies to tech-enabled companies,” Reffkin said. “From retail stores to Amazon. From the gym to Peloton. From traditional brokerage firms to Compass.”

“We’ve been building, for seven years, a technology platform with hundreds of millions of dollars in [research and development] to help agents grow their business and better serve their clients,” Reffkin added.

Reffkin also praised the leaders at the helm of the company’s technology development on CNBCGreg Hart and Joseph Sirosh, both former Amazon executives — at a time when the company has seen a small leadership shuffle.

Sara Patterson, the company’s chief people officer — the name for the top human resources role at the company — left Compass after just three months in her new role, according to a report from The Real Deal. Margaret Smith, the head of talent and a three-year veteran of the company, will take Patterson’s role.

At the same time, the company also hired Brad Serwin as general counsel. Serwin was most recently the general counsel at Glassdoor and has previously worked in senior leadership roles at eBay, Ticketmaster and Sands Corporation.

Reffkin also said on CNBC that a semblance of recovery is already here in the real estate industry. The company has seen contract activity back to pre-pandemic levels in 90 percent of its total 135 markets and a recent study published by the company shows that the real estate market hit bottom in mid-April.

“Buyers right now are saying to themselves, I’ve been locked in my space for 3 months, and they’re evaluating, do they have enough space inside and outside, do they have enough light, do they have the right home office,” Reffkin said. “If the answer to those questions is no, then they call their agent.”

“Buyers have never been so intimately aware of the inadequacies of their home.”

Email Patrick Kearns

Compass | coronavirus
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