OSCRE International, an analyst firm that guides the real estate community on using technology to transform their business, has announced the launch of its Blockchain Initiative to explore applications of this emerging technology in the commercial real estate industry.
The announcement was made at the RealComm/IBCon Conference, a leading industry conference focused on the intersection of technology, innovation and real estate operations.
Blockchain technology generally refers to a digital ledger in which transactions made in bitcoin or another cryptocurrency such as Ethereum are recorded chronologically and publicly. This record is immutable (it cannot be altered) which means it provides excellent security for data transactions. In recent months, numerous other industries have begun looking at Blockchain in order to improve their own transactional record keeping. For instance, IBM recently teamed up with Chinese partners in a project that will see Blockchain used to track pork supplies from the farm, through the slaughterhouse and factory, all the way to the stores.
“There is growing acceptance of blockchain’s value to streamline business operations, and our (real estate) industry needs to catch up,” said David Karpook, OSCRE’s chairman and a strategic consultant for Planon Software, in a statement. “Given the transactional nature of our business, we cannot afford to be left behind because we chose to do nothing. We must be proactive,” he added.
The OSCRE Blockchain Initiative is bringing a diverse group of leaders together to explore the possibilities of this emerging technology specific to the industry’s operational and investment needs. Blockchain technology can facilitate smart contracts, cryptocurrency transfers and much more.
The OSCRE Initiative will identify business opportunities where these technologies will have the greatest impact and follow through with pilot projects. By design, this Initiative will include both a corporate real estate and investment perspective, and will be international in scope.
“Data integrity is critical to blockchain platforms, and so this initiative complements OSCRE’s core focus on the development and implementation of real estate standards,” said Lisa Stanley, CEO of OSCRE International. "We look forward to working with industry leaders to forge new collaborations in blockchain applications and other emerging technologies.”