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Innovators to produce tech solutions to real estate challenges

New York City is synonymous with innovation. The bright lights of the Big Apple have long attracted the best and brightest minds across several industries—and that spirit is a fundamental component of our city’s standing as a global leader. The Real Estate Board of New York is proud to cultivate that entrepreneurial spirit by supporting the 2019 PropTech Challenge.

The PropTech Challenge is designed to attract innovative thinkers and software developers with an interest in real estate to create new, innovative, and cutting-edge solutions to challenges facing New York real estate.

Last year — the inaugural competition — attracted talent from across the globe. We fielded 44 submissions from 82 participants from all corners of the globe, with participants from countries as diverse as India, Israel, Nigeria, Spain, Zimbabwe, and the United States.

The winners created solutions from applications that empower commercial brokers to create 3-dimensional virtual tours on a smartphone to an app to keep tenants connected with their property managers.

This year, eligible applicants can work across a range of challenge categories. The winning team in each category will be awarded a $12,500 cash prize.

The Real Estate Board of New York is supporting 2019 PropTech Challenge.

There is no doubt that property management is undergoing a significant transformation with the rise of machine learning and predictive and prescriptive analytics helping translate an influx of new available data.

Participants interested in this challenge area, which is sponsored by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), are encouraged to consider questions about energy efficiency — particularly regarding Real Time Energy Management (RTEM). Folks interested in participating in this category can learn more at

Technology is transforming our industry, with devices connecting properties with tenants, enabling digital transactions, and the growth of data as a fundamental driver of success.

This challenge area invites participants to consider ways to leverage wireless networks, smartly utilize data to provide tangible insights, and weigh cybersecurity concerns.

Applicants can participate individually or as a part of a team of up to five people, producing a written and video presentation demonstrating their solution — with a special emphasis placed on their practicality and business sense to ensure viability. The deadline to submit is October 6, 2019.

The judging panel will include leading REBNY members, experts from across the industry, and representatives from the sponsors.

The panel will select three finalists for each category, with those teams then invited to a Demo Day on November 12 and 13 at the Metropolitan Pavilion. Winners on those days will be invited to participate in the MIPIM Start Up Competition in Cannes, France in March 2020.

Special thanks to the Chair of the REBNYTech Committee, John J. Gilbert III as well as Sandy Jacolow, the Chief Information Officer of Meridian Capital for
their leadership in putting this showcase together.

Last year’s event was a great success, and we are thankful to our partner Reed MIDEM and our sponsors — NYSERDA, Newmark Group, Connected Real Estate Magazine, Oxford Properties Group, Rudin Management, Reonomy, Vornado and Fisher Brothers — for making this event possible for another year.

For more information about the competition, including how to register, please visit our website at

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