Collabra Technology, a leader in real estate marketing technology, strengthened its executive team by hiring James Rouse as Chief Financial Officer (CFO).
Rouse is an experienced media CFO with a strong track record of accomplishments in accelerating sales, streamlining operations, and implementing efficiencies that optimize productivity, margins, and profit. Rouse’s recent experience includes serving for six years as division CFO at Cumulus Media.
Collabra’s near-term growth strategy includes implementation of a new enterprise management system, and Rouse is playing a pivotal role, having led ERP conversions at both Deloitte and Kaiser Permanente. He also helmed a series of mergers and acquisitions for Cumulus Media, experience that Collabra CEO Janet Case believes will prove valuable as the company continues its expansion.
“James’ experiences and insights will be key to helping us capitalize on our company’s strengths and move forward with the right practices and mindsets to fuel our continued growth, including M&A,” said Case.
“James joined the company as interim CFO in Q2, and it quickly became clear that he offers a strong ability to drive revenue generation and focused growth. We’re thrilled to have him in this role full-time.”
Collabra’s digital marketing platform currently serves such top-tier real estate companies as Douglas Elliman, Knight Frank, and Coldwell Banker Luxury, as well as hundreds of brokerage offices across the U.S.
Collabra Technology Inc., a leader in professional real estate photography and digital marketing, announces its 2019 Visual Media Awards (VMAs) for outstanding real estate imagery to three Collabra Media Group specialists from across the country.
The Collabra VMAs are presented annually to honor real estate photography and videography providers for their artistic composition and technical skill. Award winners are determined by peer voting from Collabra’s nationwide network of professional photographers, videographers, and media experts.
Larry Nitz of Oklahoma Property Tours in Tulsa won the Visual Media Award for the Best Video of the Year. Becky Beacham of 360Idaho in Boise earned the award for Best Aerial Photo, while Mark Lee of Mark Lee Photo in Los Angeles took top honors for Best Photo (DSLR).
Finalists included photographers Mike Dew and Michael Shelhart from The Photo Dewd in Riverside, Calif., and videographers Jeff Stein (TourFactory San Diego) and Eugene Michel (TourFactory Spokane). Photographer Bob Gojkovich, now with TourFactory Colorado, earned distinction for an image he captured for GloPro Media in Scottsdale, Ariz.
“With most buyers starting their home search online, today’s agents must make an immediate impression, before viewers scroll to the next listing,” said Collabra Technology CEO Janet Case. “Our photographers understand agents’ needs and expertly craft images that capture buyers’ attention.”
The Collabra Media Group comprises independent media professionals supporting real estate agents with a complete suite of marketing technology solutions and professional imagery to optimize presentations of their listings. Group members are authorized providers of TourFactory and Proxio products for digital and social media marketing.
“Our goal is to help agents market every listing efficiently and effectively,” Case said. “The highquality images from Collabra providers consistently contribute to stronger, faster sales. These photographers are truly the best of the best.”
The winning images can be seen at https://collabramedia.com/2019-visual-media-awards/.
Real estate technology leader Collabra Technology announced the hiring of David Sisson, a senior-level product executive with more than 18 years’ experience in innovative digital technology development with top companies including Zillow Group.
As Vice President of Products for Collabra Technology, Sisson will drive efforts to enhance and expand the company’s groundbreaking, multilingual digital sales platform, which is already the chosen technology provider for top-tier real estate companies including Douglas Elliman, Knight Frank, Lennar International and Coldwell Banker.
Collabra Technology CEO Janet Case said Sisson’s “deep understanding of enterprise-level client needs and extensive product development experience will spearhead aggressive new development in all areas of the digital marketing space. Collabra Technology is already the best marketing and sales platform in the marketplace; with David’s strategic approach, our future includes new and innovative solutions for the world’s leading companies.”
Sisson is the former Director of Product Management for Zillow Group and has extensive consulting and product experience with a long list of client partners including Boeing’s Digital Aviation division, Microsoft’s Finance Group and Expedia’s Call Center Technology Group.
Collabra Technology is headquartered in Spokane, Wash., and has grown rapidly since its inception in early 2018 following a merger between TourFactory and Proxio.
Collabra CEO Janet Case says that prior to the merger, TourFactory was looking for a larger audience. Meanwhile, Proxio wanted to reach more real estate agents.
TourFactory, a Spokane company that developed virtual home tours, has merged with Proxio Inc., a global marketing and networking services company based in Santa Clara, Calif.
The two have combined to form a new software company known as Collabra Technology Inc., which offers a collaborative marketing and sales platform that generates project-specific analytics.
Although she declines to disclose terms of the merger, Janet Case, co-founder of Proxio and the CEO of Collabra, says the union was mutually beneficial for the two companies, as both are innovators of technology platforms that support the real estate industry.
Proxio’s digital marketing and sales platform is designed to engage sales teams and real estate agents in the marketing process, while TourFactory provides photography, video, and other raw content for marketing.
“TourFactory produces media content, and Proxio’s platform uses that content to create material, distribute it, and then track that distribution,” she says. “In combining these platforms, we form a very integrated, complementary relationship.”
Originally known as Home Debut Inc., TourFactory was founded in 1996 by former Spokane residents Anne Sperling and Stacy Morse. Sperling, who co-created and holds the patent for the virtual home tours technology, now serves as Collabra’s chief visionary officer. Morse remains a shareholder in the company, providing key insights as a TourFactory visual media provider in the greater Seattle area.
Founded in 2007 by Janet Case and Peter Spicer, Proxio has provided real estate network and multiple listing services through a cloud-based platform that allows real estate professionals worldwide to share market listings. Case now serves as Collabra’s CEO, while Spicer is the company’s chief technology officer.
Following the merger, which was finalized March 15, Proxio moved its four California-based employees to TourFactory’s headquarters in the Fernwell Building, at 505 W. Riverside in downtown Spokane.
Case says Collabra Technology Inc. currently employs 44 people here and occupies about 9,400 square feet of office space on the second and third floors of the Fernwell Building, in addition to about 20 more employees at various office locations worldwide.
Case says the merger has enabled the two companies to combine their respective offerings into one larger platform that provides customized marketing materials to clients around the world.
“In this merger, TourFactory was looking for a way to leverage Proxio’s global presence and reach a larger audience with its media channel,” she says.
Meanwhile, Proxio needed more access to agents in the field who would be interested in buying its platform technology, Case says.
“In combining our companies, not only can our clients buy media products from TourFactory, but they can now use the Proxio platform to present and promote those products to a larger audience, as well as track their sales results in real time,” she says.
The platform is secure, can be viewed in multiple languages, and offers real-time analytics tools that showcase views, shares, and potential leads, enabling sales teams to easily track and share information, as well as streamline their marketing to better connect with clients, Case asserts.
Collabra serves a wide variety of real estate industry clients ranging from single agents and brokers to developers, builders, and large, branded real estate companies, she says.
“Prior to the merger we didn’t have much overlap in our respective client bases,” she says. “We’ve since rolled all of our clients into one, so we’re offering both our same services as well as new services to all of our clients.”
Case says media services previously offered by TourFactory are still sold individually either by use or by subscription, while Proxio’s platform is offered as a subscription service.
For now, Case says, Collabra continues to offer technology and visual media services under the Proxio and TourFactory brands to the real estate industry, but over time, both brands will be absorbed into the Collabra name.
“Our companies each have a certain level of brand recognition in their respective markets, so we wanted to make sure the name transition was done slowly, so as not to create confusion,” she says.
As a benefit of the merger, Case says brokers and agents who currently use TourFactory can incorporate high-resolution photography, videography, and other media from TourFactory’s channel marketing network and 450 visual media professionals into their global marketing platform from Proxio.
In combining their resources and expertise, Chase says the two companies eventually hope to offer Collabra’s multilingual platform to companies in a range of industries that have distributed sales teams and a need for visually compelling digital marketing.
“Right now, we’re focused on trying to make it easy for agents to present information well and get it into the hands of consumers,” she says. “Eventually, we’d like to offer new customers a variation of our existing platform that’s been adapted to suit their industry needs.”
She says the platform will be marketed initially to other real estate industries, such as brokerages that market commercial and rental properties, followed by other outside industries that rely on visual components for sales, such as yacht and luxury boats, classic cars, tractors, and used farm equipment.
“Our current focus is residential real estate, but this technology isn’t limited to that,” she says. “It’s a powerful tool because it’s digital, and the analytics can be tracked. Really this could be adapted to work for any sales market that desires to distribute information broadly.”
Case describes the platform technology as an empty bucket that’s just waiting to be filled with specific content.
“In real estate, the content includes pictures, virtual tours, and property information,” she says. “For other industries, those details would match whatever product they’re selling and be distributed accordingly to interested buyers.”
While it’s still too early for her to predict the new company’s potential growth, Case says Collabra is open to opportunities that will enable it to keep expanding.
“Media is constantly changing, and we want to be able to adapt to those changes and continue to grow,” she says.
“We are and intend to be global in scope, so we’re open to conversations with potential foreign partners who are looking to reach beyond their local markets,” she adds. “But those relationships might take the form of partnerships rather than mergers or acquisitions, as we’re mostly looking to help connect buyers and sellers.”
TourFactory, LLC and Proxio, Inc. today announced they have merged to form Collabra Technology, Inc., an enterprise software company offering a collaborative marketing and sales platform that generates project-specific analytics in real-time, globally. Collabra will offer its multilingual platform to companies in a range of industries that have distributed sales teams and a need for visually compelling digital marketing.
“Both TourFactory and Proxio are innovators of technology platforms supporting the multi-billion dollar real estate industry,” said Janet Case, co-founder of Proxio and the new CEO of Collabra. “By combining our resources and expertise, we will develop and launch collaboration-driven digital services that will accomplish for other industries what our companies have done for real estate.”
Industry leaders including Lennar International and Coldwell Banker Global Luxury use Collabra’s ground-breaking, collaborative platform, first developed by Proxio, to empower their sales teams and elevate their digital marketing capabilities. This new model provides customized marketing materials and tracks results using a digital platform that connects businesses with their sales teams and clients on a global scale.
In addition to Case, who brings an international technology marketing background to Collabra as CEO, company leadership includes Proxio co-founder Peter Spicer and TourFactory co-founder Anne Sperling. Spicer, a versatile technology executive with extensive experience in global SaaS platforms, system architecture and development, will serve as chief technology officer. Sperling, a patent-holder and virtual tour co-creator, will serve as Collabra’s chief visionary officer.
“We’re well positioned to serve the most tech-savvy and progressive sales-driven businesses in any industry,” Case said. “To stay competitive, modern sales teams need cutting-edge digital collateral, clear and actionable analytics, and an efficient way to extend their reach around the globe. Our collaborative platform does that. We predict rapid growth as we scale to expand, seek strategic partnerships, and pursue opportunities for future acquisitions.”
Collabra will continue to offer technology and visual media services under the Proxio and TourFactory brands to the real estate industry. As a benefit of the merger, brokerages and agents can seamlessly incorporate high-resolution photography, videography and other media from TourFactory’s channel marketing network and 450 visual media professionals into their global marketing platform from Proxio. Collabra is headquartered in Spokane, Washington.