Proptech Association Australia – President’s Report 2022

Proptech Association Australia – President’s Report 2022


  • 147 members
  • 4393 LinkedIn followers
  • 1600 mailing list 
  • 124 award entries
  • 78 award finalists 
  • 23 award winners
  • 8 panels hosted
  • 13 roundtables
  • 1 government consultation
  • 1 invitation to a government advisory committee
  • 1 position paper
  • 23 podcast interviews with members
  • 16 live representations at conferences and events


“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

African proverb

On reflection, 2022 feels like the year that we all crammed the work of multiple years into just 12 months. Looking back on the Proptech Association Australia’s second full year, it’s astonishing to see what we managed to achieve. Let’s take a moment to reflect on the cost of that – both for the industry and upon us as individuals – so we can ‘budget’ appropriately for 2023.

The off-again, on-again, off-again nature of Covid19 meant everyone in the industry has navigated lockdown and a constant requirement to be flexible. We’ve worked in offices and at home, returned to live events while managing punishing Zoom schedules, taken time off with illness, juggled the expectation and pleasure of more connected family lives, waited interminably in airline queues and for delayed flights, and done all of this while achieving career and personal goals. We’ve all had to be extraordinarily resilient. 

Like so many of our members know, start-ups are hard. But the pace of scaling can be even harder, even more intense and it needs to be managed mindfully. Certainly, 2022 has been the year the Proptech Association started to scale – and the year that the proptech industry itself ratcheted it up several notches with record-breaking deals, buy-outs and investments. Even the Australian Financial Review has started to recognise the work of some proptech members – so as a sector, we are officially becoming a thing! 

You can see our growth in our finances, in our membership and in our engagement levels. 

I’m enormously proud of what we’ve achieved at the Proptech Association and, as we head towards Christmas and the promise of beach days and a break, I’m also super conscious of the advice that I give to both our members and my own clients – and my own need to take it. And it’s that no one person is ever responsible for everything, even in a startup; that we need to give ourselves permission to set boundaries and manage our energy to avoid burnout, ask for help when we need it and that our priority is to build a team around us who will support us. 

The most successful startups that I see are not always those with the most incredible, clever or ground-breaking ideas. A more common factor in success is that they are those whose founders inherently understand that the real challenge is to scale by bringing people – investors, customers, stakeholders and staff – with them. 

Creating something new from nothing but an idea, convincing clients and staff to believe in the dream, selling the vision, problem-solving, and writing code – these all take a huge amount of energy, and it is important to recognise that this energy is a resource. Moving from the chaos of a new idea to a structured process also takes energy. Markets that have headwinds – as we are now experiencing – take energy and resources. But what Covid taught us is that we get energy from each other when we genuinely connect and many hands make light work. 

Often the hardest decisions we have to make as founders are to decide not what we will do, but what we won’t do with the resources we have to hand. This has been the lesson that 2022 has personally smacked me about the head with several times. But I’m not alone. 

It is telling that one of the highest audience-rated speakers at the Proptech Forum was Ash Farrugia from ActivePipe (now MoxiWorks) with a frank conversation about mental health, managing your wellness and resilience. That someone with the extraordinary success that Ash has had under his belt could admit that it at times came at a cost, was an important thing to hear. Many members later confided that Ash had helped them to realise that they weren’t the only ones to feel as they did. He gave their own challenges some context.   

That sums up to me why the Proptech Association Australia exists. 

It exists because we wanted to ensure that proptech founders and teams understood that there were others like them with similar experiences; to help us see the challenges we should be facing as an industry rather than individually; and to build a ‘tribe that gets our vibe’ of like-minded change makers who can support each other through the good, the bad, the exultant and the ugly. 

Do we have all the answers? Nope. Can we solve all the problems? Nope. Can we do everything we’d like to and say “yes” to every idea proposed to us. Again nope, and that is definitely the thing I find hardest of all. Like many founders, I tend to get hung up on what still needs to be done rather than recognising what has been achieved. 

But reflecting with gratitude is an important way to build resilience and this year the Proptech Association worked on initiatives that would move the needle as much as possible for as many of our members as possible. 

I’m hugely proud of everything the association has been able to accomplish over the past 12 months, the relationships we have deepened and the momentum we have developed thanks to the very hard work and enthusiasm of our board and support of our sponsors and growing membership has now given us a strong financial foundation. This ‘vibey tribe’ is far from finished, but it has great bones! 

In 2023, we are bringing on a community manager as a first point of contact for members and to help us coordinate events and member engagement. We have new subcommittees and Board Advisors. We will be spearheading more industry representation and working with our sponsors to hold more networking and events which we are organising in advance. We are working towards being more organised, intentional and process-driven so that we can also be more intensely personal. 

I look forward to scaling even further and bringing even more proptechs along for the journey. Because together, we might not always be as fast as we’d like, but we are always stronger. 

A summary of our activity for the past 12 months is below:

Achievements for 2022

Proptech Awards

The Proptech Awards 2022 marked the single biggest gathering of proptechs under one roof with a sold-out, packed house and 310 people at our gala dinner held at Dockside in Sydney. 

We handed out more than 23 major awards, four minor category awards, and recognised excellence across startup, scaling and established proptechs, while also recognising the importance of leadership and culture. 

After an enormous amount of work to organise the night, the lesson of “have good people around you and you can scale” was brought home when as President, I was unable to attend due to Covid, and had to beam in via Zoom. But I’m told a cracking night was had by everyone and it was great to see the energy, enthusiasm and passion in the room. Thank you too to those proptechs who had bought tables and then allowed others to join them as Covid took people out and space was at a premium. That was the sort of community spirit that really summed up the generosity of members towards each other. 

Huge thanks go to Marie-Anne Lampotang for taking over when I fell back, to Jennifer Harrison and Peter Schravemade for doing a fantastic job as MCs and to Ashurst (Leah Peakman and Stuart Dullard) as our major sponsor for their belief in the event and their flexibility in coping with the challenges created by its popularity. Thank you too to our award sponsors Pexa, Capstone, Monoova, TrueLayer, REIWA, Stone & Chalk, MRI, Envestnet, Shaype, Proptrack, WebIT, YepHome, Yodlee and IdeaSpies and to our 40 judges without whom we could not have held the awards. A seriously big salute to the judges. 

The 2022 event saw new categories added, including Consumer Proptech and Proptech Leader of the Year, and we have more exciting plans for the new year. 

In 2023, the Proptech Awards will be held on Wednesday July 19 at The Fullerton in Sydney –  which can host up to 500 people. Nominations will open in February. 

Free entry to the awards is one of the big advantages of PTAA membership, and I’d encourage every member to take the time to participate. The entry process itself can be revelatory in helping you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your proptech to date, and reflect on what you have achieved so far. While winning the glassware is always wonderful, taking time out in your year to review your progress can also be hugely valuable and rewarding. And celebrating with your peers is always tremendous fun. 

Proptech Forum

After 18 months working with the Rise Initiative, I’ve seen how transformative really great content and programming can be. So it was a personal ambition to host a proptech industry conference that used the education and training examples that we see so prevalent across the real estate industry and apply them to our own industry. 

Held at the NSW Teachers Federation, more than 160 people attended the jam-packed day full of big ideas that explored the technology, market trends and issues that are impacting how we conceive, develop, promote and scale proptech solutions.

Every session provided a new revelation but standouts included Fred Schebesta, who articulated the ‘Scooby Doo Paradox’ – how your limitations as a founder is often the ghost that haunts your startup; Nigel Dalton who introduced us to the word “limbic” and how disruption is now a jungle not a zoo; and Ash Farrugia who discussed the resilience challenges of succeeding in proptech. Mina Radhakrishnan was also enlightening with her thoughts around filtering and prioritising ideas by asking yourself not ‘if’ you should do it, but ‘how’ could you do it – with the ‘how’ determining the resources and prioritisation new ideas get given. 

Every session was fascinating but most rewarding was the success of the 12 roundtable discussions which, for the first time, brought the industry together to discuss issues in depth. A very big thank you to our sponsors and roundtable partners Ashurst, Forms Live, Little Hinges, Monoova, Proptrack, Pexa, Vertex Cyber Security, Capstone, JLL, WeldonCo, MRI, REIP, Real Care and our industry partners Stone & Chalk,  Proptech BNE and REACH. 

A big thank you too to Jennifer Harrison who worked tirelessly to bring so many of our sponsors on board and to Kylie Dillon, Cecille Weldon and John Minns who arrived early and helped set up the room. It was particularly funny to see the NSW Property Services Commissioner putting up sponsor banners – great to see our taxes at work! 

Our Proptech Forum for 2023 is scheduled for Wednesday October 18. 

Proptech Panels

With live events taking off again in 2022 – and everyone being somewhat done with Zoom catch ups – we held seven Proptech Panels this year virtually, and three panels live as part of the Proptech Forum. 

Our online panels covered topics including fintech and proptech hybrids, proptech in commercial real estate, how proptech is improving property development, how proptech is maximising property sales, and de-stressing the property transaction. In all, 32 proptechs – plus a host of industry and proptech community supporters – were featured.

If you have an idea for a panel for 2023, please reach out to Jen, Mal or myself as we are currently in planning mode.   

The Proptech Podcast

The Proptech Podcast passed 30,000 downloads this year and was recognised as one of the Top 10 Commercial Proptech Podcasts globally by Occupier. (We were in seventh position!)

By year’s end, we will have interviewed 30 more individual proptech founders or CEOs, plus shared the Proptech Panel content to our audience. With so many deals being done in the proptech space in Australia, we not only discussed new proptech innovations but started to look at the proptech business landscape with interviews with Proptech Group, Domain and MRI. 

Interestingly, we’re being increasingly pitched from PR companies overseas as the podcast gains traction in the US which now commands 19% of listeners. 

All members of the Proptech Association are eligible for an interview. Please reach out if you’ve not had an opportunity to go onto the show yet. 

Other Events & Conferences

With live events back on the agenda, conferences meant jumping back onto planes and in front of live audiences. Proptech Association directors were honoured to speak at industry conferences including REISA, Australian Property Institute, Proptech Summit, the Fintech Summit, Future Place’s Real Estate Innovation Festival, REIWA’s ReConnect, MRI Ascend, Innovation Bay’s Investor Day and of course, our own Proptech Forum. 

It’s always great to help audiences better understand what is happening in the space, and to identify proptechs that are solving specific problems for different industry sectors. This is a key part of our outreach work to build awareness of the industry and sharing the thought leadership of what we see in the sector and where our solutions are solving real-world problems. 

  • Representing Member Interests
  • NSW Property Management Data Security

In 2022, the Proptech Association hosted our first roundtable that delivered a position paper on 

Property Management, Data and Cyber Security and we discussed our position with advisors from Minister for Customer Service, Digital Government and Fair Trading, Victor Dominello. 

Members can log onto the PTAA website to read the position paper in full. It was great to see proptechs rally together – with very little notice – to discuss an issue as important as data and cyber security and to find areas of common ground. Our summary paper was well received and we expect to be invited to the broader industry roundtable being organised by the Minister in the new year. 

  • REEDI Governance Forum

The Proptech Association was also honoured to have been accepted as a non-voting member for the REEDI (Residential Energy Efficiency Disclosure Initiative) Governance Forum – a collaborative project of the Commonwealth, state and territory governments to develop a national framework for the disclosure of residential energy efficiency information. 

Proptech businesses have a huge role to play in the transition of Australia’s 10.7 million established properties into more energy-efficient homes – whether that’s through energy efficiency or carbon-reduction solutions, or even in how we identify key data points that inform how energy efficiency is recognised, measured and managed and make it easier for us as a society to adopt new standards through our connections with the real estate and valuation industries.  

A very big thank you to Cecille Weldon who has been instrumental in ensuring we are part of this engagement. We will make further announcements in the new year about work we are doing in this space. 

News, Calendars and Events

It’s a sign of how big the year has been that two of our own tech initiatives have gone largely under the radar. This year we’ve ramped up our News section with a regular stream of articles appearing about proptech funding rounds, acquisitions, awards and major achievements of our members, plus our own news, videos and insights. 

The News and Calendar sections of our website are a valuable resource for the marketing and PR teams of every Proptech – and these are free to all members to make a submission. Plus, the fact that member news can be hosted on a third-party website gives you the ability to post it to your socials and have a humble brag about the coverage!

Equally, we’ve seen the need for a single source of truth around real estate, property and proptech events so we are in the process of compiling an events calendar on our website. 

All members can have their events listed free so I encourage everyone to use it – send us an email about webinars or events that you’re attending that we might have missed. Our goal is to create an industry asset that helps event planners identify what is on and when to avoid clashes, and to make it easier for everyone to see what to attend or sponsor. 

Thank yous

The Proptech Association would not exist without the hard work and generous support of some key people and we are expanding and formalising our network in 2023. 

Jennifer Harrison as Vice President has her own phenomenal reputation for knowledge of people in the industry and who is doing what. She is everywhere I cannot be and then some, and has been tireless in helping the association find sponsors, judges and reach out to associates. 

Marie-Anne Lampotang as Treasurer has also been a powerhouse. Not a week goes by when Mal doesn’t do work of some kind for the association, from managing the accounts, sending out the invoices, managing cash flow and paying our bills while also helping us connect strategically into the startup ecosystem through Stone & Chalk. 

I’d also like to thank AJ Chand and Kylie Dillon our proptech founder board members who have waved the flag for the association, mentored other proptech founders and volunteered their time, ideas and networks to support and grow the association in addition to their day jobs of running rapidly scaling and successful proptechs (including a couple of fundraising rounds). 

I am also grateful for the wise counsel of John Minns, the NSW Property Services Commissioner. John has been a reliable and constant source of sound advice and calm, when, like all founders, I’ve lost my mind a few times. I know I can always go to John to help me see the bigger picture and reset and am enormously grateful for his support. 

Thanks too go to Simon Hayes, our secretary, who is stepping down as a director this year but will take on a role in our Commercial Proptech Subcommittee. The combined role of Treasurer-Secretary will be held by Marie-Anne. 

Cecille Weldon, as our first Advisory member has also made a tremendous contribution this year ensuring the Association was included on the REEDI forum, networking with CSIRO and working tirelessly to establish us in the ESG and environment space.

I’d also like to thank Isaac Coonan, head of Proptech BNE and Peter Schravemade, director at REACH. Their support for the Proptech Association has been extensive, generous and unfailing. Despite the different purposes of our organisations, we are united in mission and values for the industry and it is great to know that two such awesome humans have got our back. I look forward to working with both of them more closely this year with Peter joining us as a director, and Isaac joining as an Advisor. 

I’d also like to thank my own team who have kept everything turning in the background. The fabulous Jill Escudero, digital marketing associate and can-do girl when it comes to everything digital, and Paula Shearer, my wingwoman, editor and writer par excellence whose cheerful ability to ‘smash out’ an edm knows seemingly no limits, and Micah Songco who has been quietly building our presence on Facebook and Instagram. 

New Community Manager

The Proptech Association will welcome Eleanor Salt into the new role of Member Manager in 2023. With the committee stretched in so many directions, we’ve been conscious that onboarding new members and making sure we’re engaging day to day has slipped through the cracks. Eleanor will be resolving that for us. 

Elenor comes to us with a fantastic pedigree in community management and business operations with experience at Nano Home Loans, AOK Pass, Seed Partnerships, and Westpac and I personally can’t wait til she starts. She’s an important part of our plans to scale, consolidate and improve in 2023. 

Subcommittees for 2023

I’m also excited to announce that 2023 is the year we expand our Advisory panel and create a more formalised Advisory & Subcommittee structure. 

In addition to our board, as president, I’d like to welcome:

  • Carolyn Trickett, head of JLL Spark as our Commercial Proptech Advisor together with  Simon Hayes
  • David Howell, CEO and founder of Dynamic Methods, Martin Boyd from Vertex and Justin Butterworth, founder and CEO of Snug who are driving our new Data & Cyber Security Subcommittee
  • Ari Ginsberg who is working on our Founder committee with AJ Chand. 
  • Kylie Dillon from Real Time Conveyancer who is driving our WA and SA engagement
  • Issac Coonan from Proptech BNE who is driving our engagement with Queensland and will lend his considerable knowledge and experience to the board. 


A big thank you to our members, associates and sponsors. You are the people who showed up, who entered the awards, who came to the forum, who have jumped on the calls and zooms and roundtables. Keep leaning in. 

The Proptech Association has been created for proptechs to support a fast-emerging industry that is spinning into being before our eyes. There is so much to do – from policy work to collaborations, discussions to start, connections to make, whitepapers, industry advice and guidelines, pitch nights, introductions, events. 

So if you see something that needs to be done or you want to get involved in, DON’T wait for the board or expect that we need to drive everything. Pitch us an idea. If you can see how the umbrella of an industry association can help support and grow a stronger proptech sector, and you want to be a thought leader, put your hand up. Don’t tell us what we’re doing wrong. Tell us how we could do it better. 

Help us build the processes, structure and engagement as we scale into 2023. It’s going to be heaps of fun.