Ryan Antrim, Founder & CEO, Checkpoint ID
Mark Case, Founder & CEO, mLease
Everett Lynn, Founder, Amenify
Patti Girardi, Chief Marketing Officer, Valet Living
Chris Herndon, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, The Guild
Marc Rutzen, CEO & Co-Founder, Enodo
David Staley, Co-Founder & President, Digible, Inc.
Philip Meyer, CEO & Co-Founder, Lineups.io
John Helm, Managing Director, RETV Management
Nine passionate entrepreneurs with new approaches to the apartment industry shared highlights of their multifamily startups on Day One of AIM | 18. From innovations in checking IDs and exciting new uses for big data to interesting lodging models, the hour showcased a range of ideas poised to make a splash.
CheckpointID is a multipoint ID verification software program for asset managers that helps them get more mileage out of their marketing campaigns, screen renters more effectively and run leasing teams more efficiently. CheckpointID’s program is activated by a simple scan of the prospect’s government-issued ID. Managers receive a note indicating pass or fail. “ID fraud is all too common in apartment communities, and the results can be devastating,” notes Ryan Antrim, Founder and CEO of CheckpointID. CheckpointID masks the data and provides aggregate information to managers regarding prospect demographics. This extra layer of detail allows for the mining of extremely useful, verified data that can prove vital to marketing efforts. Masking ensures the demographic information is compliant with Fair Housing laws.
mLease is a mobile app that combines technologies to enable a frictionless leasing process from advertising to key pickup. It automates multiple steps by eliminating the traditional guest card model and the need for manual entries into a system. mLease begins at the point of online marketing and prompts prospects to apply for prequalification, set up tours, sign leases and pick up keys. It all happens automatically, without human intervention. “This is what the millennial generation wants,” says mLease Founder & CEO Mark Case. MLease promises end-to-end mobile apartment leasing — from ad to lease.
Amenify is a real estate technology company that connects residents with local lifestyle experiences and amenities such as dog walking, on-site fitness classes and ride sharing. Amenify officially launched in 2016 as an amenities solution for multifamily. The first product was little more than a coupon book, but it grew quickly into a technology platform for clients, residents and local businesses. Amenify is now present in more than 25 markets and handles thousands of resident transactions per month. Its client list ranges from national REITs to boutique developers, some of whom have invested alongside institutional venture capital backing. Amenify’s white-label software elevates their brands and decrease work for the onsite team. “We are a true turnkey solution,” said Everett Lynn, Founder of Amenify. “You get credit for things that go well. We step in if there are things that go wrong.”
Valet Living Home is a mobile app that provides multifamily residents exclusive access to directly ordering best-in-class amenities. They can schedule pet walks, home cleanings, waste and recycling collection, access offers from local and national partners and save money with exclusive discounts. “This is the only mobile app of its kind,” said Patti Girardi, Chief Marketing Officer of Valet Living. “All services are performed by W-2, background-checked associates.” Formerly known as Valet Waste, Valet Living Home’s expanded mission reduces the pain of turning apartment homes.
The Guild co-locates hotels within apartment buildings, according to Chris Herndon, co-founder and co-CEO. It creates a new type of lodging by combining elements of hotels and short-term rentals. The Guild makes no physical modifications to the floor plan. Spacious suites feature stylish hotel-like amenities, a mobile concierge team and robust rewards program. The apartment company pays a fixed-rate lease, just like a retail tenant. During lease-up, partnerships with The Guild can reduce carrying costs by up to $3 million. The Guild has partnerships with AMLI, Greystar, Pimco, the Lincoln Property Group and the Carlyle Group.
Enodo’s bold mission is to eliminate the need (and cost) of traditional real estate analysts by aggregating, organizing and cleaning detailed property data from multifamily assets across the country. It validates the property data using Natural Language Processing to ensure information is accurate and reliable. By using a proprietary platform, as well as various APIs pulling from Google and other ILSs, Enodo quickly and flawlessly collects relevant property data and forms actionable insights. This allows users to calculate rent premiums based on amenity, test value-add and development scenarios and dynamically benchmark. The biggest competitive differentiator, according to Marc Rutzen, the start-up’s co-founder and CEO, is that his platform trains on user input. “As you use it, it gets better over time.”
Lineups.io helps multifamily operators compare their customers’ journey with the competition’s. The software performs a full-scale checkup on marketing health while looking for red flags — like a competitor showing up in a branded search or a high bounce rate when sites are accessed on mobile devices. Lineups.io gets to the nitty-gritty of details that can be hard to identify, but can cause massive damage to the lead generation pipeline. “It’s not always the case that someone will tell us when something is broken,” said Philip Meyer, CEO and co-founder of Lineups.io. “There are too many moving parts to know whether things are always working.”
Real Estate Technology Ventures (RETV) is an industry-backed early stage venture capital firm that helps build disruptive technology companies so the apartment industry can better operate its real estate portfolios. RETV’s team is backed by strategic partners including Lexicon Travel Technologies, SmartRent and Amenify as well as multifamily owners and managers that control 500,000 units nationwide. RETV has the dual mandate of delivering financial returns and sourcing tomorrow’s technology solutions for the multifamily industry. RETV is “like an outsource corporate development arm for the industry,” says Managing Director John Helm.