Each year Rabbet surveys commercial real estate lenders and developers to uncover the latest industry trends in CRE. In 2019’s report, we revealed a huge shift towards automation and uncovered... Read More
Construction Loan Management and the 2018 LendIt Fintech Conference
Contract Simply is now Rabbet. We’re the same company – just with a new name – building the only intelligent construction finance platform. The content of this post has been preserved with the Contract Simply name.
Team Contract Simply enjoyed a few days in San Francisco attending the 2018 LendIt Fintech Conference. In addition to meeting 100’s of lenders interested in construction loan management software, we had a chance to announce a new partnership and attend a few amazing sessions.
Top Five Highlights
Formally announcing our partnership with Starcity was perhaps the biggest highlight for us at this year’s LendIt Fintech conference. Starcity is a fellow Y Combinator grad and customer of Contract Simply and they have been getting a lot of attention as of late including this recent New York Times piece. They’re a San Francisco-based company that develops beautifully designed living communities for middle class teachers, creatives, and others. They create an environment for communal living by converting underutilized or abandoned commercial buildings and hotels, adding to a city’s housing stock without displacing a community’s longtime residents.
Founders of Starcity
The Booth, The Booth, The Booth is on Fire
As a startup sponsor for the 2018 LendIt conference, we were able to showcase our software to 100’s of commercial lenders. We learned about some of their key challenges including:
- Debt capital for real estate development is constrained, so lenders need ways to operate more efficiently and closer to capital thresholds
- Updating their technology to apply modern-day process automation to the management of construction draw documentation
- Risk mitigation and cutting down on human error
- Preventing mechanic’s liens through faster contractor payment processing
Will, Booth #7, and Seth
Diversity of Prospective Customers
We also met with several non-bank “hard money” lenders. Many of them follow strict guidelines and processes that mirror those of traditional lenders and were interested in how Contract Simply helps reduce risk, quickly processes draw requests, and expedites payments. The folks we met with genuinely care about FinTech disruption and are shopping for innovative solutions that help them continue to grow.
The Session of All Sessions
Freshly minted member of the 2018 Forbes Midas List and Founding Partner for QED Investors, Frank Rotman presented an entertaining point of view on the evolution of banking. He called it the Copernican Leap in Banking with two actions required of banks to continue to be relevant:
- Be willing to offer your best products and capabilities to other institutions’ customers
- Be willing to replace non-core products and capabilities with best-in-class offerings from third parties
His big takeaway was that “Transactional” banks are coming and institutions that don’t become one or use one will see their market share and profitability continue to erode. He defined Transactional Banks as those that manufacture white-label versions of specific products and services with critical characteristics including the legal right and skills to build best-in-class products, paired with efficient and scalable operations. Using an analogy, Frank compared how Transactional Banks can specialize in specific service layers and core functionality similar to Amazon’s AWS that has become the web services of Lending, Deposits, Payments, and Investments.
Having Fun on Social Media
Back at the Contract Simply World Headquarters in Austin, our team had a little fun providing air cover on social media. It worked as we had several folks come up to our booth asking what happened to the mushroom that walked into a bar.
A mushroom walks into a bar. Bartenders says we don’t serve your type. Mushroom says…..go to booth #7 @lendit conference for the punchline and a demo of our award-winning Construction Loan Software. Smart mushroom! pic.twitter.com/0e2etA7NTU
— ContractSimply.com (@contract_simply) April 9, 2018