Technology at the Helm of Real Estate

Thought Starters with Amine Housni - Regional Manager Middle East, Blueground

 How is technology becoming an integral part of real estate?

Technology has revolutionized our way of living. Technologically advanced features help make not only the projects smarter but most importantly the processes. Real estate tech companies are jumping aboard the experience-driven, innovation-led consumer trend to grow business on a global scale. Technology has enabled online listings for companies in real estate, a development that has increased value for the consumers to a great extent. We believe that investing in smart technology is crucial as real-time response is a priority for consumers today.

Blueground is creating a tech enabled living experience that guests love, homed in an organization that great people love working for. Our offerings are totally different from our competitors in the real estate or hospitality industry. All Blueground apartments are tech-enabled with high-speed WiFi, high-end gadgets and beautiful designs. Once the online reservation is made, guests have access to ongoing support and information through the Blueground app, where they can arrange housekeeping, request maintenance, or even modify their stay by moving to another apartment in a new neighborhood or city under the same service agreement.

In Dubai since 2016, Blueground is a real-estate tech company that offers beautifully designed and thoughtfully equipped apartments with high-end furnishings for business professionals and individual renters for mid to long-term.

 Why these features are necessary how they enhance the functionality, appeal and attraction of the development?

The real estate industry is adopting the technological changes around us- from virtual tours on listing pages to a seamless and streaming booking process, companies are seeking innovative ways to set themselves apart in an increasingly competitive landscape for new development.

At Blueground, we are providing furnished, move-in ready apartments for mid to long-term stays. Our goal is for tenants to be able to view apartments, check availabilities in real-time, sign a lease for a duration of their choosing, pay rent, and file maintenance requests, all online. Not only that, but tenants have the flexibility to move between apartments, neighborhoods, and even cities if they choose to, without constraints or penalties. Apartments are fully furnished and thoughtfully equipped, with all utilities pre-connected. The experience will be efficient, streamlined, and seamless.

  1. Anything else you wish to add in terms of technological advances in real estate.

Not just in real estate but in other aspects of their lives, people expect products and services that are mobile-first. They are much less eager to own, preferring to “share” everything from cars to couture. Finally, they are focused on experiences rather than things. So, this “new breed of consumer” has increased needs and interests and is highly interested in living an experience instead of only receiving a service. With this, there is need to have the ability to come up with products and solutions that address customer pain points. Involving technology in your home, by providing consumers with a home assistant or an online handbook (Guest app) for them to always have access to more services are now key deliverables. Further to a home assistant, smart homes now are the ideal solution to answer to the rising expectations. Every house offered can be tailor-made towards the need of the consumer.

Also, social & technological movements disrupt the real estate industry. Think of:

  • The way people live, and work is becoming increasingly remote. They need to move between apartments, neighborhoods and even countries easily.
  • The emergence of VR, AI, autonomous vehicles, and other disruptive technology. Consumers now are expecting processes to get easier with technology and more straight-forward.
  • Uncertainty in economic markets has pushed all industries to address affordability as a forefront issue. Technology is key for a company to scale-up and be able to provide premium services across continents. Blueground uses technology to expand massively and within 5 years, has achieved to have presence in nine cities in the USA, Europe and Middle East with 1,700 beautifully -furnished and thoughtfully equipped apartments.
  1. What are your expansion plans in Dubai?

Dubai has been one of the strongest Blueground markets and instrumental to our rapid growth. Having launched in the Emirate just two years ago, we have already amassed an impressive portfolio of more than 400 apartments in some of the most sought-after locations. Over the next year, our goal is to reach 1,000 apartments, becoming Dubai’s biggest tenant, and quadruple our annual turnover. On a global level, our presence spans nine cities surpassing 1,700 properties, while we want to expand our portfolio to 50,000 properties in 50 cities by 2023.

 About Blueground

Blueground ( ) is a real estate tech company that wants to make people feel at home wherever they choose to live. The company offers beautifully furnished and thoughtfully equipped apartments for a month, a year, or even longer and are designed to help people simply show up and start living. Motivated by its mission to create a tech-enabled living experience that guests love, homed in an organization where great people are proud to work, Blueground has grown quickly, surpassing 1,700 apartments and 280 team members in nine cities; New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, Washington D.C., Dubai, Istanbul and Athens. Blueground plans to have a presence in 50 cities around the world and a portfolio of more than 50,000 apartments by 2023.

About the Author

Amine Housni is the Regional Manager of Middle East operations at Blueground. He has more than six years of experience in finance, investment banking, and alternative investments, including private equity, with a special focus on technology, media, telecom, and real estate sectors in emerging markets. Amine earned an MBA from INSEAD, a Master’s degree in strategy from Essec Business School, and a Master’s of engineering from ENSICAEN (National Superior School of Engineering & Research Centre).