Yesterday UK real-estate blockchain network Coadjute (formerly Instant Property Network) said it raised £750,000 ($938,000) in a seed round. Six months ago it completed a test run of its blockchain platform along with over 40 organizations including Barclays and RBS. Coadjute now plans to develop a blockchain platform to track construction, ownership and maintenance of properties.
The initial trial was to connect all parties in a real estate transaction through its platform and eliminate the need for e-mails and telephone calls. Lawyers typically carry out due diligence and coordinate with incoming and outgoing mortgage lenders as well as the seller’s agent. One of the benefits of blockchain is that all parties are clear on the status of the real estate deal. Coadjute expects property transaction time to be reduced from three months to three weeks using blockchain. It also claims that there is potential for $160 billion in savings to be made globally through efficiencies.
Additionally, the company became aware of demand from publicly owned housing (council housing). In 2017 a publicly owned building in London, Grenfell Tower, burned down with 72 deaths. It was suspected that recently added cladding contributed to the rapid spread of the fire. A report afterwards identified the need for “greater clarity and accountability over who is responsible for building safety during the construction, refurbishment and on-going management of high-rise homes.”
Blockchain could help to fulfil that role.
“This (the successful trial) led us to realize that our integration and workflow solution for property buying could radically improve property building and occupation,” said John Reynolds, CEO and Founder of Coadjute. “Extending our solutions to cover the entire property lifecycle through build, buy and occupy has the capacity to save billions, improve efficiency and, crucially, improve transparency and safety.”
Coadjute will use the seed proceeds to develop two products. Coadjute Quality Chain will help to optimize and track new construction projects and address the issues identified in the Grenfell report. And Coadjute Instant property will be a platform for dealing with the workflow of buying and selling of property.
Coadjute uses R3’s Corda distributed ledger technology (DLT). Last year HM Land Registry commissioned software company Methods for DLT research and development for its Digital Street project. Methods worked with Blockchain Digital and Persistent Systems the two developers involved in the Instant Property Network (now Coadjute).
Property is a sector that’s attracting several blockchain projects. Two weeks ago, Korea’s SK Securities announced a partnership with blockchain startup Kasa Korea to develop a platform for tokenizing real estate. U.S.-based Figure Technologies has a blockchain platform that logs more than $80 million a month in new mortgages.