Invest-Gate wrapped up its first-ever #DigitalWeek on July 22, marking a tremendous success in assessing how digitization in the Egyptian property industry is transforming businesses and wider society, in a world where game-changing innovation has become the norm.
The #DigitalWeek’s final webinar, named “Digitizing Real Estate Market Wrap-Up Session,” saw Invest-Gate’s Real Estate Committee, along with multiple market leaders, getting to the essence of “agile” for digital transformation, in an attempt to determine ways to apply the diverse high-tech and smart solutions in Egypt’s property sector, besides backing local developers to define and excel at an innovative strategy.
The line up of industry experts and panelists at the four-day event’s concluding discussion, which was moderated by Mena Group Founder Fathallah Fawzy, includes Tatweer Misr President and CEO Ahmed Shalaby, Mountain View Chairman Amr Soliman, Rooya Group Chairman and CEO Hisham Shoukri, KVRD President Nehad Adel, Real Estate Export Council Board Member Amr El Kady, and Iwan Developments CEO Waleed Mokhtar.
To begin with, Shalaby emphasized the application of modern technologies such as Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Artificial Intelligence (AI) is key to reshaping Egypt’s real estate game, explaining that effective digital marketing tactics, paired with the availability of full analytical dataset, will contribute to tapping the target consumer market.
“Similarly, blockchain technology will boost property exports. This, however, requires cooperation between both public and private sectors through legal reforms in maximizing the adoption of virtual sales, electronic signature, and smart contracts,” Shalaby was quoted as saying.
The CEO also called on property companies to establish strong digital infrastructure and roll out innovative real estate products, and thus, create a healthy investment climate, highlighting that the aforementioned grounds is the combined core for increasing local and foreign sales.
In the same vein, Soliman pointed out that developers should promote themselves and their projects differently and innovatively abroad, which will benefit exporting real estate as a consequence. He explained that there is a global trend for “happy buildings,” which are aimed at entertaining and cheering up on-site workers, noting that Egypt’s real estate companies have great potential for this promising trend.
“Mountain View is currently implementing a happy building, called ‘Heartwork.’ During the 2020 BOMA International Conference and Expo, we announced a new joint venture with Delivering Happiness (DH) – software developer – and CallisonRTKL – hardware developer. This is typically a state-of-the-art partnership because as an Egyptian company, we managed to bring two different firms, operating in two different continents, to jointly build a one-of-a-kind AI-backed business park in Egypt,” the chairman revealed.
KVRD’s president underlined that digitizing real estate is of utmost importance following the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially with 40% of the global workforce belonging to Generation Z (i.e. people born from 1995 to 2010).
“Undoubtedly, technology is the natural language of younger generations and property developers should highly consider this. A good deal of the property cycle shall modernize soon to forge ahead, especially in the pre-design phase of smart cities, which will identify suitable land locations and ensure the sustainability of real estate projects. Out of all this, exporting Egyptian real estate can start making headway,” Adel elaborated.
He also highlighted the significance of conducting more precise analyses and studies through scientific bodies and universities for a successful digital transformation. This is because scientific research will offer sufficient learning on all aspects related to modern technology, on top of delving into the ever-changing consumer needs to facilitate decision-making and layout well-crafted blueprints for the construction of sound residential and commercial projects.
Soliman accord with the latter expert’s sentiment. He affirmed that the establishment of a neutral entity or body is necessary for an in-depth study of Egypt’s real estate market, underscoring that Mountain View reached out to foreign-based “RIX Company” to evaluate the country’s property sector, hence ensure credibility for non-Egyptian buyers, not mention giving indicators for local developers on property investment and aiding the state in land allocation.
Along the same lines, Rooya Group’s Shoukri proposed setting up an e-platform, backed by AI technologies, by industry-related partners to showcase all real estate products across the country. “Without the availability of data, digital transformation will not be conducted as appropriate,” said the property guru, pointing to the back-to-back application of blockchain technology.
Consequently, these modern solutions will benefit the Egyptian government in real estate registration by monitoring transactions, coupled with mapping out the direction of demand and prices by data analytics, hence the advancement of the country’s property industry as a whole, the CEO further stated.
There are two solutions, according to El Kady, to take initiative in terms of digital transformation nationwide. First, the tokenization of at least one domestic real estate asset; similar to the case of UAE’s Aston Plaza, which is a major bitcoin real estate project that was released initially when the country had proper infrastructure for blockchain technology. Accordingly, the move fueled the forthwith foundation of this sophisticated base.
“Secondly, the creation of an administrative body, affiliated to the Cabinet and Justice Ministry, under the supervision of the Housing Ministry, through which both public and private sectors can communicate, is another catalyst to lay out the necessary frameworks for digitization,” the real estate expert added.
In short, modern technologies such as VR, AR, and AI will substantially benefit the government, real estate developers, and clients/investors alike. Most importantly, online home buying will help to define Egypt’s real estate assets and streamline all transactions across the board.
“There are considerable efforts from the government’s end to promote electronic payments and the like. However, we miss often integrating/coordinating these efforts altogether,” Iwan Developments’ CEO concluded.
Invest-Gate’s #DigitalWeek was sponsored by Tatweer Misr as the official sponsor as well as Mountain View and KVRD as the #DigitalWeek sponsors, in addition to Nilepreneurs as the strategic partner and Nile University as the learning partner. Better yet, media partners include Cairo 360, Cairo Gossip, and Cairo Talks (Kalam El Qahira).
In case you missed Invest-Gate’s #DigitalWeek … Check out full coverage for Day 1 (Digital Business Development), Day 2 (VR and AI in Real Estate) & Day 3 (Impact of Blockchain Technology on Property Sector).