Rubicon Property founders launch real estate tech firm

Rubicon Media's first product is a digital sign-in sheet for on-site sales offices
By Katherine Clarke | April 29, 2013 11:00AM

The founders of residential brokerage Rubicon Property have launched a related technology company called Rubicon Media, which will build mobile applications and other software targeted at the real estate industry, the firm’s CEO, Jason Haber, told The Real Deal on Friday.

Rubicon Media’s first product, called Ground Up, debuted today. The application is a digital sign-in sheet designed for on-site sales offices at new developments. The information collected from the application feeds into a content management system, allowing developers to track visitors and suss out trends in foot traffic.

Ground Up is an extension of an iPad application the firm launched last year that featured a digital sign-in sheet for open houses, but it was only available to Rubicon brokers.

“Developers spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on these build outs, lavish finishes and expensive gift bags and yet you’re still greeted by a sign-in clip board, patented in 1870,” Haber said. “Then the sales team has to waste their valuable time inputting data into a spreadsheet or whatever database they’re using. We thought that was backward and frankly, silly.”

Using Ground Up, developers will be able to see how many people are attending their on-site offices, which types and sizes of apartments are seeing the most interest, and which residential brokerages are bringing the most prospective buyers to the project. The information can help developers allocate their marketing budgets more effectively, Haber said.

If a developer is marketing several projects at once, he or she can flip between them using the app, while broker sales teams can only view the project they are working on, Haber said. And developers can customize questions on the sign-in sheet to their whims, including as sales are underway. Disclosure forms are also incorporated into the application.

Rubicon will charge $999 for the application and access to the content management system, and there is an additional hosting fee of $199 per month.

Starting the new company was an obvious way for Rubicon to grow, Haber said, since its founders’ expertise lay primarily in technology, as opposed to areas like property management or title insurance. Haber’s brother Cory, the firm’s president, previously specialized in marketing and technology at Furnished Quarters, a corporate housing provider, before co-founding Rubicon in 2010.

The company has future products in development, Jason Haber noted, but remained tight-lipped on details.

The founders declined to comment on the monetary investment they made in Ground Up.