London named as Europe’s PropTech capital – report
A new study has revealed London as the most advanced city in Europe for the usage of technology in the built environment, known as PropTech.
This is according to research from international legal practice Osborne Clarke, which predicts that Amsterdam, Berlin and Paris will close the gap on London in the next five years.
The report Future Proof Real Estate – is the property sector ready for the 2020s? builds a picture of how the technology sector thinks innovation will change the face of the built environment in Europe over this five-year period.
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Several hundred tech experts from across Europe were asked to name the city they feel is leading the PropTech pack, with London being cited by 42% of respondents.
Amsterdam (28%), Berlin (26%), Paris (23%) and Stockholm (23%) complete the top five cities.
Conrad Davies, Head of Real Estate and Infrastructure at Osborne Clarke, said: “The UK capital has a long, successful history with the property market, attracting developers, investors and landlords from all over the world.
“London is also the technology capital of Europe, largely driven by the fact that it attracts the most venture capital investment in Europe and has a mature tech ecosystem. These two factors combined mean it is understandable that London is fast becoming the PropTech capital of Europe.”
The Netherlands, for example, is already developing a number of smart ‘neighbourhoods’, including Strijp-S in Eindhoven and Slim Seingraaf in Duiven, whilst increasing investment into automated vehicles and intelligent travel systems.
Davies added: “The real-estate sector has been criticised in the past for being an industry that has failed to embrace technology and innovate. However, this is changing rapidly and the market is starting to open up to the opportunities technology brings.”
Microsoft: Building a secure foundation to drive NASCAR
Microsoft is a key partner of The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) and together they are driving ahead to create an inclusive and immersive new fan experience (FX).
These long-term partners have not only navigated the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic with the use of Microsoft Teams and Microsoft 365, but are now looking to a future packed with virtual events to enhance the FX, well beyond NASCAR’S famous Daytona racetrack.
“Together, we've created a secure environment that's allowed for collaboration, but the future is all about the fans”, said Melinda Cook, General Manager for Microsoft South USA Commercial Business, who cited a culture of transparency, passion, adaptiveness, and a growth mindset as to why this alignment is so successful.”
“We've partnered to create a fluid, immersive experience for the users that is supported by a secure foundation with Microsoft in the background. We are focused on empowering and enabling customers and businesses, like NASCAR, to reach their full potential. We do this with our cloud platform which provides data insights and security.”
“Our cloud environment allows NASCAR to move forward with their digital transformation journey while we are in the background,” said Cook who highlights that Microsoft is helping NASCAR
- Empower employees productivity and collaboration
- Improve fan engagement and experience
- Improve environment security and IT productivity
- Improve racing operations
Microsoft Teams, which is part of the Microsoft 365 suite, enabled employees to work remotely, while staying productive, during the pandemic. “This allowed people to provide the same level of productivity with the use of video conference and instant messaging to collaborate on documents. Increased automation also allows the pit crews, IT, and the business to focus on safety, racing operations, and on the fan experience,” said Cook.
“We have started to innovate to create a more inclusive fanbase, this includes using Xbox to give people the experience of being a virtual racer or even leveraging some of the tools in Microsoft Teams to have a virtual ride along experience.”
“These environments are how we create a more inclusive and immersive experience for the fans. We're working on a virtual fan wall which allows people from new locations to participate in these events,” said Cook, who pointed out Microsoft was also helping bring legacy experiences alive from NASCAR’s archives.
“At Microsoft we can take it one level further by letting fans know what it's like to see the pit crew experience, the data and all the behind-the-scenes action. We will continue to improve automation with machine learning and artificial intelligence, from marketing to IT operations to finance to racing operations,” said Cook.
Christine Stoffel-Moffett, Vice President of Enterprise Technology at NASCAR, said: “Microsoft is one of our key partners. They have been instrumental in helping the NASCAR enterprise technology team re-architect our Microsoft systems to ensure an advanced level of security across our environment, contribute to our business outcomes, and focus on fan experience.”