As you probably know by know, I question whether the National Broker Public Portal stands a chance to compete against the established portals (see articles here). I’ve yet to hear a good argument as to how it plans to become a top 3-5 portal — and it doesn’t seem like a good use of time and money if it doesn’t get there. Unless, like I said before, the only goal is to give the brokerage community more leverage in talks with the portals. If that’s the sole goal, then it may succeed.
Here’s an alternative to the money being spent on BPP: a consumer real estate startup fund.
Raise $500,000 (or more). Fund 10 startups with $50,000 each, or 5 with $100,000. I would guess making a few bets on start-ups would be a better bet in the long term — though there’s also the issue of convincing early startups to take money from a fund whose goal is to create something beneficial to agents/brokers. Successful consumer startups succeed precisely because they build consumer friendly products first, not industry friendly offerings. So, those two goals don’t seem to align to make a startup fund by brokers an interesting proposition.
Perhaps, fund TechStars to run an industry accelerator with deep ties to the brokerage community (see here)?
While I doubt a collaborative funding effort among brokerages would ever happen for this sort of consumer startup fund scenario, one of the extremely large franchises may consider something to this effect. Or not.
But, hey, crazier things have happened…