Women in Proptech Global Insights: Australia Edition

Guest Speakers:

Rachel Kidwell – TCPinpoint

Cindy Chen – Equiprise

Fiona Church – Trendspek

Transcript:

Akanksha Sharma: (00:00)
Welcome everyone. Let’s just get one more minute to see if anyone else joins and then we’re going to kick off. Well, great. I’ll kick it off now. Hello everyone. Good morning. Good evening. I know it is very early for some of you so thank you so much for taking the time to join our fourth PropTech Insights series event of the year. Which is also our International Women’s day event for the year. So great timing on that. So happy to see you all could join. My name is Akanksha Sharma. I am part of the advisory committee here at Women in PropTech. Before we dive in, I do want to mention for everyone’s awareness that this Zoom session is being recorded for later viewing and it will be uploaded to YouTube and our Women in PropTech website in a few days.

Akanksha Sharma: (01:05)
So a little about Women in PropTech since I know that for some of you this might be the first Women in PropTech event you’re attending. This organisation was established in 2018 by Nikki Greenberg, who’s also on the call today. And the goal of Women in PropTech is essentially to provide a common platform for professionals interested in innovation or interested in just keeping aligned with various market changes that have the potential to impact the future of the real estate industry. And of course our goal is to promote top leadership, tackle diversity issues and in general just connect the professionals in PropTech communities globally. So today’s event, we are hosting in partnership with PropTech Association Australia.

Akanksha Sharma: (01:57)
Our agenda is packed. We have three great speakers today and I’d like to really thank Jennifer Harrison and Kylie Davis for curating this event and lining up our speakers today. Jennifer is also our moderator today and she’s the vice president of the PropTech Association Australia and a partner at Reputation Edge which is essentially a creative engagement communications and PR agency based in Sydney. I personally think we could not have had a better moderator today especially because after 20 plus years working for global banks, Jennifer is now an advocate for innovation and financial services and real estate.

Akanksha Sharma: (02:43)
She helps various startups to scale and helps various stakeholders in the industry to creatively transform their real estate portfolio through a PropTech application. So Jennifer thank you so much for all your efforts and partnership. I will soon hand it over to you but before I do that, I do want to mention for audience that if throughout the discussion you have any questions, please feel free to type them in the chat window of Zoom and we will address them towards the end. So with that, Jennifer, over to you.

Jennifer Harrison: (03:19)
Thank you so much Akanksha. Well, good morning from Sydney, Australia. I’d like to start by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which I am currently sitting which is the Wallumedegal people of the Eora nation. And I would like to pay my respects to their elders. Past, present and emerging. We’re really thrilled Akanksha, thank you so much for those words, we feel exactly the same. We were so thrilled when you invited us to be your event partner this month.

Jennifer Harrison: (03:48)
In Australia, we love property. We’re a very large island continent. We have about 26 million people. And we live in about 11 million dwellings that’s houses and what we call units, which in America you would call an apartment. About two thirds of us own, or at least on the way on a journey towards owning with the help of a mortgage. About a third of us rent. Although some estimates are that it’s probably more like 36 or 37% of the population that rent. That number is very definitely creeping up because we have an affordability issue in our major cities.

Jennifer Harrison: (04:24)
Sydney and Melbourne are two of the most expensive cities in the world. They’re both in the top 10. Nationally in Australia the median house price is 800,000 Australian dollars which is about $600,000 US. Although in Sydney, our largest and most expensive city, the median house price in Sydney is 1.2 million Australian dollars which is around 900,000 Australian dollars. You’ll find in Sydney and Melbourne and the other major markets property still at auction. There isn’t a private treaty negotiation, there’s a bidding war at auction. We have a very scarce supply, very tight supply market obviously in common with the rest of the world.

Jennifer Harrison: (05:12)
We have low interest rates and our property prices look like they might be starting to bloom again. It’s not good news for Millennials and Gen Z who possibly will be priced out of the market, possibly forever. There was some recent research that said that it would take you, the average young couple, 11 years just to save their deposit. We call it the deposit, in America I think you call it the down payment. 11 years just to save the deposit to buy that home. So a lot of people are expecting to get help from their parents or possibly actually only own a home when they eventually inherit from their parents.

Jennifer Harrison: (05:51)
So we do have a number of PropTechs that are looking at innovative ways for people to get into the market. One of the things I love about PropTech also is that it contributes towards sustainability. In Australia this week we’ve just had a one in 50 year weather event. We’ve just had a year’s worth of rain in one week. This time a year ago, we were only just wanting to breathe clean air again after a one in a 100 year event when we had catastrophic bush fires and we weren’t just on fire for a few days or a few weeks, our country was actually on fire for months. So one of the things I personally love about PropTech is not just that it takes out cost, it’s not just that it contributes to greater efficiency and productivity but that it helps resilience, it helps sustainability, it helps us tackle some of the big challenges in the world like inclusion.

Jennifer Harrison: (06:43)
And I also love The Australian PropTech Association’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. So as I said, we were absolutely thrilled to join you for this event because it gives us the opportunity to showcase three of our fantastic female founders in the PropTech space. But I’d love to introduce them to you quickly now before we have more of an in-depth conversation. First of all we have Rachel Kidwell, who is the founder of TCPinpoint. How are you Rachel? Are you well?

Rachel Kidwell: (07:15)
I’m really well, thanks Jennifer.

Jennifer Harrison: (07:18)
Wonderful. Second guest today is Cindy Chen, who is the founder of Equiprise. Hi Cindy, how are you doing?

Cindy Chen: (07:28)
Thanks. [inaudible 00:07:28].

Jennifer Harrison: (07:29)
Thanks for joining us Cindy. And our third guest is Fiona Church, who is the co-founder of Trendspek. Good day Fiona.

Fiona Church: (07:38)
Hi Jennifer. Really great to be talking to you.

Jennifer Harrison: (07:44)
Thanks so much for joining us. Okay Rachel, can we come and learn a bit more about TCPinpoint and you. Could you tell us please in a nutshell, what is TCPinpoint? Give us the elevator pitch.

Rachel Kidwell: (08:00)
Okay. So the TC in TCPinpoint stands for Tenancy Coordination. So what we do is enable process management and collaboration for landlords of retail properties. So we bring teams together to optimise, digitise, automate and scale the process of getting a store open and ready for training.

Jennifer Harrison: (08:28)
Wonderful. So can you tell us a little bit more about what problems would people be experiencing when they’re trying to get a store open and ready for trade? How do you address those problems? And in particular, how do you use technology in that?

Rachel Kidwell: (08:43)
Yes. TCPinpoint was founded off the back of my lived experience. So I was a Tenancy Coordinator for 14 years and we’re effectively solving the problem that I experienced. So, that is a lack of transparency. There’s never one version of the truth when it comes to retail tenancy delivery. Everybody would come to the table at weekly or monthly meetings with their own version of a spreadsheet and no one would have one version of the truth.

Rachel Kidwell: (09:15)
So when I was running my own consulting firm, initially the idea was how do I scale my own business by enabling a consistent, transparent process? If I was going to expand that business nationally. And then I flipped that thinking and thought, well, it’s much more scalable if we build the technology and provide it to landlords to then roll out across their own teams to help manage that process of enabling that one version of the truth.

Jennifer Harrison: (09:48)
Lovely. Thank you. So is there any ideal landlord or ideal retail tenants that you can help? Or could you give us maybe some examples of who you’ve worked with?

Rachel Kidwell: (10:03)
Sure. Ideally, it’s landlords that have 10 plus retail shopping centres, that have either a level of lease expirees coming up. So there’s that transfer of information, stores coming in or out clearly with what has been 2020. There’s a lot of turnover currently happening in some of the larger centres coming up or they might be going through a development where they’re all aiming to get a number of stores open on one particular day. So we work with customers like Fort Street Capital who are based out of Sydney.

Rachel Kidwell: (10:40)
They have 13 retail assets up and down the east coast. We are currently implementing with one of Australia’s largest retail landlords which is really exciting for us and we’ll be releasing that news soon. And we’ve also worked with Adelaide Airport. So the aviation industry is tough because of time they’re going through at the moment. They’re effectively a retail environment. So we worked with the Adelaide Airport here on their stage one terminal expansion project which we opened just over a year ago. And they’re continuing to use the technology as they move into more development over the next 12 to 24 months.

Jennifer Harrison: (11:27)
What’s the most common praise and positive feedback that you get from your partners?

Rachel Kidwell: (11:35)
It’s so wide and varied. Transparency and a level of understanding, what other team members are actually doing. So previous to TCPinpoint, everybody from a structural engineer to a lease administrator to retail design manager would all sort of sit in their siloed level of tasks and what they need to do. What TCPinpoint does is allow an empathetic environment so that one stakeholder knows the task that they do and how it affects everybody else within that chain of events. And that element of empathy I think, is so important to the successful completion of projects because if we can put ourselves in the shoes of other people, our team members. It helps all of us to ultimately reach that one goal of getting that store open for trade.

Jennifer Harrison: (12:31)
Absolutely. And do you tend to get any objections from people who are very happy with the way they do things currently? And how do you handle those objections? How do you work in your marketing strategy?

Rachel Kidwell: (12:49)
Yeah, of course. But we’re changing the way that people effectively work in there every day. We’re moving people out of Excel spreadsheets, emails, some kind of document management system and combining that all on one cloud based platform. So there’s always going to be that element of pushback and change management is a really big piece and how we ensure that the people that we work with have that ideal understanding of the why. Why are we doing this? Why are we rolling out this new digital technology? And when they understand the why, they can come along for that change management process, right?

Rachel Kidwell: (13:31)
We definitely find that there’s more buy-in. And look, there’s certainly earlier adopters that take on the technology early and then there’s also going to be the laggards. But as an industry leader in what we’re trying to do and reforming the retail terms in the delivery industry, we have to remember that Henry Ford famously said, if he asked his customers what they wanted, they would’ve said faster horses, right? So we’ve got to try and find that balance between what we believe the industry needs and be the thought leader in that capacity and marry that out with that [era 00:14:09] feedback that we’re getting from our customers as we continue to build.

Jennifer Harrison: (14:13)
Yes, absolutely. I think all of us who work in innovation understand that it’s actually very hard for people to imagine something that actually doesn’t yet exist. It’s actually very hard for them particularly if they work in industries that are focused on more of a checklist or a compliance, a risk-based approach to doing business. Thanks so much, Rachel, just maybe before we move on to Cindy, is there something amazing that you’re hoping to achieve with the rest of this year? Is there a product enhancement? Are you maybe going to open up a new channel?

Rachel Kidwell: (14:54)
Yeah. There’s always things in the pipeline, Jennifer. You know that. We’re always thinking about something else. Our main goal for this year from a product perspective is to really start to utilise the data that we’ve been capturing and formulate that in see some really interesting and dynamic data so that we can inform and enable our customers to make better business decisions moving forward. And we’re also looking to open our opportunity to work with different verticals. So whilst we’ve been focusing on the retail vertical, we’d like to open that up into some government agencies here in south Australia in the first instance and also start to looking at different sectors like perhaps education and the commercial office sector.

Jennifer Harrison: (15:43)
And do you see a global application for your technology? Is this a global problem that you are helping to solve for?

Rachel Kidwell: (15:50)
Yeah, absolutely. Over the last two years, I’ve done my own sort of market research trips back in the good old days when we could jump on a plane. I’ve done some trips over to the US into India and to Singapore just to start doing that initial market research of what’s happening on the grounds. And every conversation I’ve had, it all is the same reason. It meets the same reasons of why I founded the company in the first instance to solve my own problem because the problem is being experienced in other countries.

Jennifer Harrison: (16:22)
Wonderful. Well, in my experience there are some people who are now are doing very, very well from having first solve their own problem and then figuring out how to commercialise that and build it into an amazing business. Thanks so much for sharing that Rachel. I might now come over and have a chat with Cindy. Cindy Chen is the founder of Equiprise. Cindy, hello. Can you tell us please in a nutshell, what is Equiprise? Give us your elevator pitch.

Cindy Chen: (16:53)
Yeah, sure. So for Equiprise, we provide end to end IoT solutions for customers who owns or who uses heavy machinery on their construction site. So we help them to improve operational safety, increase their productivity and efficiency and ultimately to help them reduce project costs during the build process.

Jennifer Harrison: (17:24)
Wonderful. One of the things I do love about PropTech I mentioned before that it can be aligned with sustainable development goals but one thing I think is very important in the construction phase of the real estate life cycle is that we don’t put humans in harm’s way if we don’t have to. And if they are potentially at risk, we are using technology really creatively to help prevent some of the tragedies we know can happen in construction. So Cindy, I’m fascinated to know a little bit more about your internet of things technology. Can you tell us a little bit more what’s involved in terms of the hardware and the software?

Cindy Chen: (18:09)
Yeah. So we installed a whole bunch of different senses on those machinery to continuously monitor and collect their key operational data. So one typical example is the huge tower cranes that’s normally used on a skyscraper like High-rise building site. So we collect all the things like the load weight, the height of the hoop, the slowing angles, the wings, the beat. Basically anything that may cause a potential accident that involves the tower prank.

Cindy Chen: (18:55)
And then we use controllers to basically, one, is to send real-time alarms to the operator if something happens so they can manage their risks early and then to control the crane movements. So it can basically slow down or stop if it acts as a threshold. But at the same time we collect all this data and send it out to our cloud based remote monitoring application. So through that we can also send the alarm notification to anyone in the backhouse office or the managers. So they can do almost real time communication and collaboration with their field operators. Then they can use this data to do root cause analysis to improve the operational safety in the future or to optimise their machine utilisation. So they can not only improve the safety onsite but also potentially drive their bottom line as well.

Jennifer Harrison: (20:08)
Fantastic. Thank you. So can you share with us please some of the positive feedback and end engagement you’re getting?

Cindy Chen: (20:17)
I think the positive feedback is more around, number one, they now have visibility of what’s happening on-site from basically anywhere. Initially like industry automation is not a new thing in the market. Traditionally only the operator can see what’s on the screen in the cabin. Anyone else won’t have the visibility and they have to wait for weeks or months to understand what has happened or if something happened the investigation process can be quite long. So with the real time data collection and monitoring, they’ll be able to have hands on their site operation almost in real time.

Jennifer Harrison: (21:12)
And are you finding some people just can’t get their heads around using technology and they’re very happy with doing things the old way? And how do you try and persuade them differently?

Cindy Chen: (21:29)
Yeah, definitely. Because, I think IoT is new to this industry. So to help them understand what real-time monitoring means or what remote monitoring means to their business is the key challenge for us. So what do we do is, firstly to help them understand what really benefits either the major contractors or subcontractors and how is that going to help them be compliant, to mitigate risks and then what’s the financial benefit as well. So it’s all the customer awareness and education process.

Jennifer Harrison: (22:25)
And what are you most looking forward to for the rest of the year and heading into next year in terms of building your market awareness, hosting events, building partnerships and things of that nature?

Cindy Chen: (22:42)
Yeah. So we are looking to host [potentially 00:22:46] an event between China and Australia because we have a subsidiary in China set up and in both countries, our construction is a key to the economy and there are a lot of commonalities in that sense as well. So we’re looking to host a conference so we can get some exchange between the experience and knowledge in both countries and so we can learn from each other’s advantage and technologies that have been used or adopted by construction site. And we’re also looking to release our new product. Semi-autonomous or remote controlling tower crane solutions in the next few months. Yeah. So we’ll see how that goes. That’s going to be an interesting one.

Jennifer Harrison: (23:46)
And you’ve spoken about cranes. Are there other items of heavy machinery that you also think will be particularly suited for your solution?

Cindy Chen: (23:56)
Yes. We’re looking at the cranes, one typical use case we have on a construction site. Also, adopting our technology into excavators, wheel loaders, rollers. So anything a large piece of equipment uses both a high-rise building site or a stable construction site.

Jennifer Harrison: (24:25)
Fantastic Cindy. Thanks so much for telling us. Maybe just quickly before I go to Fiona, where does the name come from? Equiprise?

Cindy Chen: (24:36)
So, initially the thought was we are technology because many used our construction equipment. We took the first couple of letters of equipment and hopefully we can equip them with technology so they can rise on their construction sites.

Jennifer Harrison: (24:53)
Lovely. Thanks so much Cindy. Now Fiona Church is co-founder of Trendspek. Hi Fiona, let’s come and have a bit more of a chat about you and your business. Can you please tell us in a nutshell, what is Trendspek? Give us the elevator pitch.

Fiona Church: (25:10)
Sure. So it turns back software, significantly reduces the cost, the time and the risk involved in managing physical structures. And we do this by giving you exact 3D digital models. So you can see the entire structure in life-like detail. So you can remotely manage entire asset portfolios to complete inspections, to monitor, to plan and to report. And you then have unparalleled levels of transparency and efficiency that wasn’t possible before.

Jennifer Harrison: (25:53)
Wonderful. And so the 3D twins, how do the 3D twins get the images to build the 3D twin?

Fiona Church: (26:01)
Okay. So most about 3D twins are captured via drones. So a drone will go up and say do a scan of a building. It captures 100s, sometimes 1000s of photos and that’s processed together through purchase of photogrammetry to produce the exact digital copy of that structure.

Jennifer Harrison: (26:23)
Okay. So why can’t I just use a satellite in the sky to take these photos?

Fiona Church: (26:33)
So you can use the satellite, the only difference is the resolution. So when you need to do an engineering inspection or you need to see high levels of detail, the satellite just doesn’t give you anywhere near that level of information or detail. So our drone actually scans the vertical surfaces, the horizontal and it’s akin to someone looking with their naked eye. So you just can’t achieve that through satellite technology.

Jennifer Harrison: (27:09)
So how do people who don’t use your solution, how do they solve for this problem of assessing vertical surfaces for defects?

Fiona Church: (27:19)
So, traditionally especially when it’s a large structure or a structure where it’s hard to access or you have to work at heights. That is the big challenge is that you have to send people to work in a dangerous risky scenario. It’s extremely expensive. It takes a long time. And so by using a drone [inaudible 00:27:41] eliminating all those challenges. You can complete that inspection in a fraction of the time and cost.

Fiona Church: (27:47)
And you don’t have any of those risks to human life that you do sending people to do the same job. So yeah, traditionally people are still doing it in that way. And the other problem is the data that you get from someone physically doing an inspection, it’s not very comprehensive. They might be making handwritten notes, they might give you a folder full of images. And trying to make sense of that data is really hard and especially sharing it with other people is very difficult. Often the records go missing. So keeping records of that property, it’s just very, very challenging and having a three-day model brings together all those elements.

Fiona Church: (28:32)
So you never lose track of the information. You’ve got a central source of data and you can easily share it around contractors, team members, other stakeholders and you’ve got the full picture right in front of you. You can access it from anywhere, anytime.

Jennifer Harrison: (28:51)
Yeah. I love the aspect of what you’re doing. That we don’t have to put human beings into rope harnesses and dangle them down the side of something from great height. And whilst they’re dangling there, expect them to be holding some kind of camera or mobile phone and making sketches and making notes. It just seems a little bit crazy now that we’re talking about it, that this is how we used to solve for that problem. But can you tell us please Fiona, what’s the positive feedback you’re getting in the market to your solution? And could you also please comment about the global nature of the problem and your solution?

Fiona Church: (29:30)
Sure. So the positive feedback we get, again, there is lots of different positive feedback but probably key ones are the quality of the models. So people are often really impressed at the quality that we can get. Often our resolution is less than one mil per pixel, it’s extremely high resolution. And also the software is very easy to use. So anyone can use it. You don’t need to download complicated clunky software and spend hours training on how to do it will be a technical person. Anyone from the boardroom to a contractor can jump on and use the software without much training at all.

Jennifer Harrison: (30:09)
Wonderful. And so what’s on Trendspek’s roadmap for the rest of the year going into next year?

Fiona Church: (30:19)
So we got quite a few things on the roadmap. One of the key pieces is our AI piece which we are developing in-house at the moment. And so that will look at change detection and object detection. So as you do repeat captures, you start to be able to look at trends. Trends over time and be able to look at predictive maintenance. So we are developing AI that will automatically detect say, a crack that’s changed or corrosion that has developed or maybe a missing tile. So it will be able to do that for you versus you actually having to visually look at the changes. And beyond that, there’s a lot of integrations we’re doing with other asset management software and integrating other data sources like thermal data and Lidar data as well into the platform.

Jennifer Harrison: (31:16)
Now, I just heard you talk about trends. Is that possibly where the trend in Trendspek comes from?

Fiona Church: (31:24)
Yeah, That’s right. Yeah, it is related to trends. So I think ultimately the idea is you do monitor trends over time. You can see how things evolve and change and you can start to get a real picture of how that evolution occurs. So using a drone to do it and the digital modelling, it’s very easy to do that repeatedly and consistently over time.

Jennifer Harrison: (31:54)
Thanks so much for Fiona. If anyone does have a question for Rachel, Cindy or Fiona, please do pop it into the chat. Just to continue the conversation while we see if any questions come through. Rachel, could you share a little bit with us please about your founder’s journey? How did you… Sorry. A little bit more about what you shared before. You said you started off by solving your own problem but how has it gone from there? How have you funded the business? And I know you have participated in an accelerator programme called RealTechX. Could you share us a little bit about that please?

Rachel Kidwell: (32:31)
Yes. The idea was literally written down on an A3 piece of paper which I still have. With four lines of what we wanted to achieve to solve the problem that we’re experiencing. And that was in 2016 and I think everybody on the panel would know, with a lot of hard work, patience, sprinkled with a bit of resilience in there, because nothing is easy. Particularly when you’re coming from a non-tech founder background.

Rachel Kidwell: (33:07)
So, I’ve come from the construction world where everything is quite tangible, yeah? This has been my biggest challenge I think, is going to a construction site and seeing over the slabbing for the walls going up, the services being run through. So it’s very tangible, you can see it. Whereas with technology and the development of the tech, so much trust goes into your tech team. And it’s not always tangible to us who really only see and interact with the front end. And we all know that so much happens in the backend. So that’s definitely been a challenge that I really loved getting to know more about how the tech is built.

Rachel Kidwell: (33:49)
We have pretty much been self-funded. We took some early angel investment at the beginning. And from there we’ve really raised our funding through revenue, government grants. We’ve taken part in a number of different accelerators which has really helped me build my own capacity as a business owner and yes RealTechX was one of those [inaudible 00:34:18] a few others. And it’s great to be part of an environment where you’re surrounded by like-minded founders and founders of such fantastic experience and the ability to learn from their experiences as well has been one of the biggest takeaways from that programme.

Jennifer Harrison: (34:41)
On the final [swishers 00:34:42] will say Rachel you’re based in Adelaide, in South Australia and you’re based in Stone & Chalk in South Australia and Stone & Chalk are one of our foundation supporters of the PropTech Association of Australia.

Rachel Kidwell: (34:56)
Mm-hmm (affirmative). Absolutely. It’s a great place to base yourself again with like-minded founders who are going through the same challenges.

Jennifer Harrison: (35:04)
Wonderful. Cindy, you’re in Melbourne. You’re also in Stone & Chalk. Could you tell us a little bit, did you just wake up one day and say, “I know what I want to do. I want to be a PropTech founder in construction.” How did that happen for you?

Cindy Chen: (35:23)
No, so definitely not, before I started this I was actually at Telstra. Big corporate, as a business technology consultant. It’s a very different environment. So at that time my main focus was helping customers develop their digital strategy. How they transform their business enabled by different sorts of technologies and big data analytics. And then I think in 2018 I got into the IoT consulting project.

Cindy Chen: (36:04)
So that’s when I really got knowledge and experience in internet of things. I got really interested. I thought it could be one of the foundation that can help customers to digitally transform their physical business especially with the traditional industry. I think at that time there are quite few on the news. There were quite a few tower crane accidents in Melbourne. And I have some family background.

Cindy Chen: (36:39)
My dad has his own business, almost 30 years in this heavy machinery industry from focusing on safety automation but more into the hardware side. So we thought about combining his deep domain and industry knowledge and experience with the emerging technology like cloud applications, big data IoT machine learning, AI, we can do something meaningful for this industry to help make it safer and more efficient. So that’s how I started.

Jennifer Harrison: (37:16)
Wonderful. Thank you. I’m always really curious to ask this question and have the answers and Fiona can you please tell us what did you do before Trendspek? And how did you and your co-founders come up with the idea of solving for the problem you are solving for?

Fiona Church: (37:32)
Yeah. So prior to launching the software business Trendspek, I was running a drain services business with my other two co-founders. And we actually developed this software in direct response to what our clients were asking for. So we were pioneering using a drone to capture say, a large warehouse roof at very high resolution and creating a 3D model.

Fiona Church: (38:01)
But the problem was there was no actual software that we could deliver that to the client with the features they actually wanted. They wanted to be able to tag a defect. They want to share it to someone. They want to be able to easily move it around, make measurements. And because that didn’t exist, we decided, “Okay. We’ll actually build it.” So that’s what sparked the development of Trendspek. To try and deliver that turn key solution to our [inaudible 00:38:31] from drone service business.

Jennifer Harrison: (38:34)
Mm-hmm (affirmative). And what did you do before you had the drone service business?

Fiona Church: (38:39)
So before that, the three of us were actually commercial pilots. So we have an aviation background and that really helped us in the beginning because in Australia, we were actually one of the first countries to regulate drone use. But the entire system for unmanned aerial vehicles is based on the manned system. So they’ve taken a lot from that sector and by being pilots, we already had a really good understanding of how that works.

Fiona Church: (39:10)
We could get a licence more easily than someone off the street that didn’t have that background or understanding. So that led us to get involved in drone business. And my partner Derek, he was also a very avid photographer. So he brought in the photography videography knowledge as well to the business.

Jennifer Harrison: (39:35)
Thank you so much. Well, I think that probably brings us about up to time. From my perspective this has been an absolute pleasure and I couldn’t think of anything better to do early in the morning. And if you know me you’ll know I’m actually not a morning person but I cannot think of anything better to do early in the morning than help three fantastic female founders who have some serious tick in their businesses. Big data, internet of things, drones 3D imagery.

Jennifer Harrison: (40:05)
This has been an absolute pleasure. I would love people on the call if you’d like to stay up to date with us, what we’re doing in Australia. Please follow us on LinkedIn. We have a page, we’re PropTech Association Australia and we also have a website as well. So I think that’s about it. Akanksha.

Akanksha Sharma: (40:23)
Yeah, I think most questions have been answered but Kylie did raise a question specifically for Fiona. And I think in some shape or form we have answered but she was asking if there’s potential of role of attack in converting existing traditional building stock and making buildings smarter by creating an easily up datable data stream for existing buildings? So.

Fiona Church: (40:52)
Yes, well that is the majority of what we do, is existing buildings. You can apply this to the construction progress or do progress monitoring. Update the model for each stage and look at the trends but yeah, predominantly this is applied to existing structures. And then you can create a baseline report. Okay. This is a condition at this set time. And then if you capture a set intervals, if you can start seeing trends. You can use that data from everything from supporting insurance claims to supporting sale of the building by having that data available.

Akanksha Sharma: (41:34)
Right. Thank you for that response. And one more question I do want to ask because we were having an interesting chat. The question that Nikki raised. How big is the PropTech ecosystem? And Kylie responded saying the PropTech ecosystem in Australia is around 600 businesses and it has rapidly grown over the past five years. So this question isn’t targeted at anyone, so feel free to answer whoever can. So my question is, what happened in those five years? What were some of the triggers that spurted that growth from normal BAU to rapid? Were there any industry drivers? Regulatory or government support for startups that accelerated that growth? Or whether there were some other factors?

Jennifer Harrison: (42:27)
I might take that one. Look, I think even before the pandemic actually, retail was struggling in Australia and some aspects of industrial were okay and some aspects of industrial were struggling as well. And residential was booming until about 2017 and then house prices started to dip from 2017. So I think adversity is a great reason for a lot of people in business to look for things to do better. When house prices start to drop people are like, “Oh, okay.”

Jennifer Harrison: (43:05)
When your tenancy and your occupancy rates start to drop people start to look for ways to do it better. And then the pandemic just perpetuated that, particularly in the residential sales and listings and the office letting space. Physically people couldn’t go and inspect property. So agents just had to find ways to do it differently. And so now what we’re quite interested to see is how they continue with the innovations they had to adopt but they’re continuing with them now because they just see they work better.

Akanksha Sharma: (43:44)
No. Great. That totally makes sense. Thank you so much for the response. Any other questions from the audience? No? Well, great. Jennifer, happy to give everyone a few minutes back if that’s the route you want to take?

Jennifer Harrison: (44:09)
Sure, maybe we could just go back. Rachel, is there anything else you would like people to know about TCPinpoint that you haven’t already communicated? And what’s the best way for people to get in touch with you or find out more about you from like LinkedIn or your website, for example?

Rachel Kidwell: (44:30)
Thank you. I’m always available on LinkedIn, you can connect with me there and TCPinpoint.com, TCinspect.com that I use, one of our sister products. Via PropTech Australia. It’s always great to be able to connect and collaborate with a really great team over on the Eastern seaboard. Yeah, we’re on all the socials. Follow us and it’d be great to continue to connect and share our progress as we move forward.

Jennifer Harrison: (45:00)
Wonderful. Thank you. Cindy, is there anything that we haven’t spoken of about Equiprise that you’d like to share? And what’s the best way for people to get in touch and follow you?

Cindy Chen: (45:13)
Yeah. I’m pretty active on LinkedIn as well. So yeah, that’s probably the best place to keep connected. And yeah, we’ll keep everybody updated on our Equiprise journey. There are quite a few things lined up in the next couple of months.

Jennifer Harrison: (45:37)
Great. And Fiona, is there anything we haven’t already covered on Trendspek that you’d like to share? And what’s the best way for people to get in touch and stay up to date?

Fiona Church: (45:46)
Yeah. I think the main thing is that often people have quite a few questions about, how does this apply to their particular type of asset? So the main message is just feel free to get in touch with us through your LinkedIn, email or the website. And we can just talk you through how this works. A lot of companies are setting up their own drone programmes, so we can give you advice about how to successfully complete the capture if you have your own drone programme and you can just upload directly to our software or if we can connect you to someone who can do the capture for you. So yeah, just feel free to reach out with any questions. We’ll talk you through it. So yeah, don’t be shy.

Akanksha Sharma: (46:37)
Well, great. Any other questions? Last minute comments? Remarks? Right. Well I think, yeah we can give everyone a few minutes back. Thank you so much everyone for your time. This was a wonderful, informative and engaging discussion all at the same time. Fiona, Rachel, Cindy, special thanks to you. Jennifer, thank you so much for moderating this event. And we really hope that we be in touch, stay in touch and talk to you all soon.

Jennifer Harrison: (47:14)
Thank you so much Akanksha, Rachel, Cindy and Fiona.

Akanksha Sharma: (47:19)
Great. Take ca-

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