Top Image – Nirupa Shankar (center) with John Kuruvilla (left) and Apul Nahata (right).
The real estate market unlimited itself from conventional construction systems to modern construction technologies! It is expanding fast in Tier II & Tier III cities. The tech startups have been disrupting the space and considered responsible for this positive change. Bengaluru-based Brigade Enterprises, a 30 year old real estate major, has launched the country’s first real estate-focused startup accelerator programme named “the Real Estate Accelerator Program (REAP)” with an aim to work exclusively with the tech startups serving in real estate industry to accelerate the speed of adoption of disruptive technologies in the ever changing industry.
Notably, the Brigade group is the same realty developer who has developed Brigade Towers, the tallest building built by a private developer in Bangalore, completed in 1990. The record was broken only in 2002
The Invention of “REAP” Idea
“REAP” has been invented by using combine resources within a well established real estate group. Brigade Enterprises, one of India’s leading real estate giant has announced the launch of REAP in October 2016. It has been selected five tech startups for its first batch whose services and technology can be applied to improve the efficiency of the real estate industry. The mind behind starting this accelerator programme is of Ms. Nirupa Shankar, Director, Brigade Hospitality who is the daughter of Brigade Group’s Chairman M. R. Jaishankar, Brigade Enterprises and entrepreneurship blood runs in her body. She is also involved in the family business for past seven years and understands the needs of real estate industry in a better way.
Nirupa Shankar Director of Brigade REAP shared in a short interview with IndianWeb2, “I have been working with Brigade Group for the past 7 years. I have a better understanding of this segment as over the course of this time we have launched 3 hotels, 3 clubs and a convention centre with 8 more hotels under various stages of construction.” The company is partnering with other companies to become a path-breaking company in India.
Nirupa has over 10 years of work experience and oversees the operations & strategy for Brigade’s self-managed assets, which include convention centres, serviced apartments, lifestyle membership clubs, banquets, catering and event management. She has been awarded Young Woman Entrepreneur of the Year 2014 at the Infra & Realty Sutra Awards and Rising Star Award 2015 by South Asia by the International Society of Hospitality
Nurturing Startups with Joint Support from Industry Giants
The Brigade Real Estate Accelerator Program (REAP) is a venture of Brigade Group and this is India’s FIRST real estate accelerator. The main purpose of REAP is to mentor startups whose end products or services can be applied in the real estate domain, be it residential, commercial, hospitality or retail. Solutions can be applied in either B2B or B2C models. Nirupa Shankar explained, “Most of the accelerators are industry agnostic, but we wanted to be sector specific because that brings in a lot of focus into what we are doing. The Brigade has the domain expertise that will help to add tremendous value to the startups in this space. We are keen to lead this transformation in a space that has not had any major disruptions in the past few decades.” There is huge potential for innovation in the real estate space and the sector is on the cusp of transformation.
REAP has tied up with tech giants to benefit the particular startups from the mentorship and technology expertise and to take this programme further on successfully. Nirupa Shankar confirmed, “Yes REAP has partnered with INTEL, CISCO, Microsoft Accelerator and JLL. There is no other accelerator in the country that can boast of such giants as their technology and knowledge partners. We will help early stage technology startup companies strongly focusing in IOT, Cleantech, Visual Computing, Nanotechnology, Logistic & Analytics use in the real estate industry.”
What does set apart Brigade “Reap”?
The Brigade Group is a 30 year old real estate company based in India. When asked Nirupa Shankar what makes REAP as different from the tech accelerators in India? She replied, “The most valuable aspect of REAP that set it apart from its competitors is its team that comes with years of experience in the same segment as well as in corporate, investment and startup world. In addition, our family business values set by my father also keeps us motivated in every good or bad situation.” She also mentioned about her team members and appreciated all of them for their contribution. Its team members list include, John Kuruvilla, the Chief Mentor at Brigade REAP is a serial entrepreneur himself. He served as a Managing Director of GenNext Ventures a Reliance Industries Limited sponsored venture fund.
Apul Nahata — a tech entrepreneur himself, was the co-founder of a popular tech startup in 2008-10 TringMe [read here]. He is the Mentor-in-Residence at Brigade REAP. He was also instrumental in helping set up and run the GenNext Innovation Hub, an accelerator program sponsored by Reliance Industries Limited that has already seen 3 batches, with a total of over 30+ companies, graduate successfully.
The Real Strength of “REAP”
The real strength of REAP is its team and straight- forward approach to make business. When asked Nirupa Shankar what is the real strength of “REAP”? She replied, “I respect my father Mr. M. R. Jaishankar- Chairman of Brigade a lot as he is a true visionary. Actually he is the epitome of integrity, hard work and business acumen and the main driving force behind the creation of Brigade REAP.” She always admires her father and keeps his lines in mind, “To succeed, all one needs is hard work and common sense.”
If you think that you have a game-changer business idea that is relevant to real estate industry and sectors range from IoT, Nano Technology, Cleantech and Renewable energy, Logistics and Visual Computing. Please visit at www.brigadereap.com for further details.