JLL has been doing a lot of thinking about their investment moves. Since they created their technology investment arm, JLL Spark, they have been doing exhaustive research into potential companies that they want to invest in. Earlier this year they put $100 million into the fund in order to leverage technology to improve their wide base of operations. Even with all this time and capital, they have been rather selective with the number of companies that they have chosen to invest in. So far, they have only made direct investments in Stessa and Skyline.Ai although they have also been investors in other investment organizations like MetaProp NYC’s new fund and Navitas Capital.
But now they have chosen another happy recipient of their money and their client network. Dealpath is a San Francisco based research software for portfolios. They were featured in a popular article we published in June about whether on not a real estate portfolio’s deal flow should be factored into its overall value. The increased understanding of all of the properties either under review or in stages of negotiation has helped portfolio management teams get an idea of how they are performing so it seems logical that investors could eventually use that information as well (at least that was our thesis, feel free to read the article and argue with us on that point).
The investment from JLL obviously comes with a lot more than money. How much money they wouldn’t tell us (we always ask). Dealpath’s Lou Hong told us that Dealpath was going to first go through JLL’s enormous clientele base and determine which would be good candidates to use their products: “Our initial focus will be to work with JLL to find existing clients that could benefit from Dealpath’s deal management platform.” He was really excited for the prospect of taping JLL’s knowledge to help develop their product even further: “the unique advantage that this partnership provides is the ability to combine JLL’s deep industry experience with Dealpath’s solution resulting in significant ROI.”
We think that the research and underwriting process goes unnoticed in the flashy world of real estate brokers and mangers but it is one of the most important elements to making a real estate company successful. We will be sure to follow up with the teams at Spark and Dealpath to find out what they learn from bringing this powerful research software to a much broader user base.