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Fifth Wall, Built World, and Playing Kingmaker

Technologists/vendors who read Geek Estate Blog, and likely every founder, already knows Fifth Wall. Agents and brokers, perhaps not. With 20 investments under their belt since coming on the scene a couple years ago, they are one of our industry’s largest capital players with a unique ability to create kings (read my post on category kinds from a couple years ago). Beyond being one of Opendoor’s early investors, they have invested in companies ranging from LimeBike (bike sharing) to Industrious (workplace-as-a-service) to Blend (mortgage tech) to Foxtrot (next generation corner store). The common thread is what they call “Built World”. In other words, where the physical world intersects with technology. Short Fifth Wall promo video:

This week marks Fifth Wall ‘s LP Conference in Los Angeles, bringing together their team (a number of additions were announced today), founders from across their portfolio, and their strategic network of real estate owners such as Lennar, Hines, Host, Macerich, CBRE, and Prologis (who are their LPs).

Fifth Wall’s investment thesis is fascinating to me personally; I love smart cities, smart homes/buildings, local, and community (which is an amenity for building tenants across every class of building). Counting the largest real estate owners / operators in the United States as investors presents portfolio companies with a unique strategic advantage in terms of distribution. Those of you who speak to founders (or are one yourself) know distribution is the hardest part of building a business in today’s noisy/crowded landscape we live in.

I’m looking forward to attending the event (and seeing the sun in LA), and discussing technology and innovation in the Built World, and meeting the “Built World” king makers.

Disclosure: Fifth Wall is a consulting client.

About Drew Meyers

Founder of Geek Estate Blog / Geek Estate Labs. Zillow Alum. Travel addict & co-founder of Horizon. Social entrepreneurship & microfinance advocate. Fan of Red Hot Chili Peppers and Kiva.

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