Digital was most definitely one of this year’s key focuses at MIPIM. Where digital technology was once touted as radically changing the very bones of the property industry — online shopping replacing the need for physical shops for example — digital innovation this year focused more on being an enabling tool, improving the way business is done rather than changing it completely.
It was a trend that was evident throughout the market, from conferences and stands to technology demos, as exhibitors and attendees shared how digital can and is changing their lives and businesses. Its disruptive nature is still evident, however, and it is likely the industry will undergo huge shifts in exactly how it does business as digital continues to impact real estate. One of the most high-profile events was the Digital Disruptors session on Wednesday where the audience had the chance to hear, evaluate and vote on some of the digital tools and changes that are — or will imminently be — available to them. Eight digital innovators presented at the event.
Digital innovations were on show everywhere — from virtual reality to online leasing to digital property marketplaces — all illustrating how they were speeding up business. Online space marketplace Appear Here — voted the biggest digital disruptor in the Digital Disruptors session — revealed at MIPIM that half of its bookings last month took under 48 hours compared with the industry’s traditional three to six months. Meanwhile technology company Visualise explained how its property tours are improving viewing rates, pushing up sales prices and delivering more for customers and property owners.
Digital is bringing more people together than ever — whether physically or remotely, cutting down development times and complexity and enabling a much more dynamic property marketplace and a faster realisation of projects. You only have to look at the rapid growth of crowdfunding to realise the benefits that digital can enable in this respect.
Digital is a trend that businesses simply can’t afford to ignore.
Top photo: Digital Disruptors explain their business model at a MIPIM session