Bucharest-based Bright Spaces, a Romanian PropTech startup that offers an interactive showcasing solution for office spaces, raised €1.5M from Axeleo Capital, Pi Labs, Sparking Capital, and Growceanu. This news comes after they implemented their solution in England for Brickfield Business Center, offering users the possibility of seeing the spaces for rent in three design themes.
The pandemic has shifted many industries around the world towards digitalization and has brought in new criteria for office tours. Bright Spaces tries to answer a market’s need, by targeting both users that want to interact digitally with a 3D office space and landlords looking for an administrative platform that provides data on closed deals, vacancy, potential customers, and their specific requirements.
The company aims to expand internationally and develop its digital leasing solution in the real estate market in CEE and Western Europe. “We are witnessing an accelerated digitization of the commercial real estate industry and an increased interest for tech solutions that facilitate digital leasing and visualization of spaces,” shares Bogdan Nicoara, co-founder and CEO of Bright Spaces.
Is PropTech here to stay?
Bright Spaces was launched in 2019 by Bogdan-Adrian Nicoara, in the CEO seat, Andrei Constantin, in the CTO chair, and Ciprian Pasca, who is also the President of Proptech Romania. Amongst the startup’s clients, there are Skanska, One United Properties, Impact Hub, and Moorland Property Solutions, which owns the Brickfield Business Center.
The European PropTech Association – PropTech House and FINNOVA (EU) Foundation have made their top 50 selection of PropTech startups and scaleups for 2021. Data, AI, and Machine Learning or RPA are the top three trends standing out in this vertical. These startups aim to increase visibility, transparency, and speed.
Mathias Flattin, Partner and Fund Manager of Axeleo Proptech I, says that Bright Spaces integrates real estate workflow to accelerate commercialization and optimize tenants’ management without disrupting the organization. This way, managers can have more control over their data to evaluate at a later date.
The PropTech vertical is also part of the Growceanu Angel Investment portfolio. The group of entrepreneurs aims to invest €1M in 18 startups in 2021. Ciprian Man, a co-founder of Growceanu Angel Investment, said that Bright Spaces tackled a niche’s problem and offered a fast solution right from the beginning.
Real estate challenges and PropTech solutions in Europe
In SEE, many systems are outdated, so access to data is and will continue to be one of the biggest challenges. Another key finding of this sector is the hybrid future of work mode that many companies are thinking of adopting and the investor’s interest in smart buildings.
Genesis Property, a Class A office developer in Romania, shared with The Recursive a study that shows over 88% of employees in the country believe that offices will exist in the future, but that 34% expect offices to resemble the coworking model. Over 80% of employees consider ventilation and air quality, but also natural light, top priorities, while over 48% want to work in a building that has a certificate for health threats.
Amongst the top 50 European PropTech companies, we found digital marketplaces that aim to bring transparency and efficiency to real estate transactions, like the BidX1 in Cyprus. While ClevAir from Norway offers smart building management solutions to help save energy and revitalize the indoor climate.
In the SEE, Bulgarian startup Propy facilitates online transactions, as well as the Greek startup Prosperity that also digitalizes documents, like notary procedures. In Romania, Apio Digital allows users to visit spaces digitally, even those that haven’t, yet, been created. They allow users to explore the building’s surroundings and play with different light scenarios inside to promote fast digital decisions.