CBRE’s Canadian CRE Outlook Explores Impact of Technology

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As we enter a new year, many are wondering what 2019 will hold for commercial property in Canada. At CBRE’s annual Canadian Market Outlook in Vancouver, the commercial real estate company discussed how they believe the industry will be impacted by technology. The top brokerages gave insight on how they anticipate technology will play into the market:

CBRE: “I didn’t see a lot of tech experience in the C-suite. In fact, I saw almost none. And I don’t mean the people who oversee the servers and hand out the laptops; I mean those who can provide true strategic guidance. This is one area where our industry is definitely going to have to evolve.” – Paul Morassutti, Executive Vice President, CBRE.

In 2019, we will see the C Suite step up in terms of technology and the utilization of it. Technology can fuel the strategic guidance these C Suite executives need to offer their professionals and it is crucial that they stay ahead of the curve. Executives should no longer fly above the crowd, but embed themselves deep within the roots of the company by learning and using new technology.

“It will be imperative for cities and companies to develop digital master plans to determine how IoT and sensor technology can improve infrastructure, safety, emergency response and sustainability initiatives,.” – Benjamin Breslau, Managing Director of Americas Research, JLL

The IoT has the ability to make property management simple by gathering data using sensors. These sensors can improve the infrastructure, safety and emergency response of properties. The IoT can do everything from detect leaks to manage the temperature in specific spaces to adhere to tenants’ needs. This can also help to maintain costs since energy uses can be lowered due to the sensor data.

“I think when we enter 2019, we will see less but bigger and more profitable (and ultimately, more successful) PropTech businesses left.” – Soahil Rashid, Founder and CEO of View My Chain

The incredible growth of real estate technology has left the industry oversaturated with competitors, new options and plenty of startups. As the market begins to grow and mature, many companies will simply not make the cut, leaving only the best of the best in the mix. Mr. Rashid states that if you provide a solution with a clear, tangible and short-term ROI, then it is a huge opportunity. If not, then it is a challenge. There may be a number or PropTech start-ups who disappear, although the quality of those that remain will increase. This means that in 2019, only the most worthy and successful PropTech businesses will survive.

Circling back to CBRE’s Canadian CRE outlook, Mr. Morassutti also said he does not believe cars are going to disappear anytime soon, but the broad adoption of autonomous vehicles is going to come faster than most think. Once driverless cars are in place, it will be an afterthought to own a car. Technology in 2019 will completely evolve commercial real estate where we project to see everything from ease in property management to the adoption of technology in the C-suite.

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