The Real Deal New York

Clients of CRM Contactually wary of Compass takeover

Current users of the CRM are concerned about data privacy and paying for a competitor’s software
March 01, 2019 08:35AM

Compass CEO Robert Reffkin and Contactually CEO Zvi Band

It’s only been a few days since Compass bought Contactually, a cloud-based customer relationship management system used by major brokerages including Sotheby’s International Realty and Berkshire Hathaway. And already clients of the CRM are expressing doubts about the future.

Current Contactually users are worried about data privacy, the rate of Compass’ tech development and the potential conflicts of using a CRM owned by a rival company, according to Inman.

“As Compass feels the pressure to start delivering on promises made to its agents, and given their well-known and admitted technology development challenges, it comes as no surprise to us that they would use their venture capital dollars to purchase a CRM instead of continuing to try to create their own,” John Peyton, president and CEO of Realogy’s franchise group, told Inman in a statement. “Contactually clients should get assurances – in writing – regarding the protection of their data from Compass’ use.”

Contactually posted on their website that no data would be shared with Compass, which is backed by SoftBank and in September was valued at $4.4 billion.

“It’s also our long-standing policy to never sell, give, or trade your data to other companies – even in the case of third-party partnerships – without your consent,” the post said, adding that data is stored on a server that will not be accessible to Compass.

Other agents raised concerns about paying a rival brokerage for access to the CRM.

“What I fear is that the Contactually innovations will go first to the Compass products, leaving Contactually behind a bit,” Bill Tierney, a real estate agent with Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty in Massachusetts, said. “And I am not willing to pay to fund a competitors product line.”

In a email to company employees in January, Compass CEO Robert Reffkin said that the company had made mistakes in their tech expansion in 2018.

“We launched some technology without testing it thoroughly with agents,” Reffkin wrote, “and learned we can move too fast.” [Inman] – Decca Muldowney