GPARENCE, a leading commercial mortgage brokerage, has grown rapidly in the eight months since its launch, closing hundreds of millions of dollars in transactions. GPARENCY has gained increasing popularity for its ability to allow mortgage brokers to complete financing deals at their cost of $11,000. Partner Insights spoke with Ben Schweitzer, Chief Product Officer and Co-Founder of GPARENCY, about how the company is reimagining the value a mortgage broker can bring to the table.
Trade Observer: Tell me about the live listing page that GPARENCY is preparing to introduce.
Ben Schweitzer: We offer a map-centric view of all commercial real estate listings for free. Some companies in the market – LoopNet and Crexi, in particular – provide some of this technology. We are not looking to replace these companies, we are looking to be the central source – the first mile for the commercial real estate owner. So, let’s say you own commercial real estate. You have properties that need financing and you are looking to acquire new ones. This map will show you properties you own versus new properties you may want to acquire. We then give the owner access to listing brokers and provide the associated financing, which is really our forte — matching commercial property owners with sources of capital. The listing product is just one way to centralize this process for commercial real estate owners with best-in-class mapping technology. The beta version of this is now accessible on our website, and by the end of Q3 we will have a significant improvement in mapping technology. We are developing features that will make these searches much more powerful.
Given the nature of these products and the speed with which they evolve, what do you think your service will look like in a year?
I expect every commercial real estate owner to start their day checking GPARENCY for the latest information on those properties instead of going to Google Maps, especially properties they might want to own, or their own properties. We will become the search engine for commercial real estate.
Tell me about the GPARENCY team.
I used to lead innovation and data strategy at Freddie Mac, and part of my job was to interact and partner with all the fintech companies in the market. So I know a lot of the CRE technology industry very well. What makes us unique is that we have a mix of commercial real estate transaction professionals, including a new large loans division, as well as originators, brokers, processors and underwriters, and a growing technology team. growth. Many companies have one or the other, but having that mix of the two is extremely important. We are building a best-in-class technology team that includes our CTO and product teams.
Is there anything else you think is important for people to know about what you’re working on right now?
Given the impending recession, we continue to face the inherent challenges of obtaining financing and finding cost-effective ways to source transactions and raise capital. This is our priority. For your readers who share these concerns, they should check us out, as this is the space we play in.
How did a new approach to lender relations help establish GPARENCY?
I look at examples in adjoining spaces like LendingTree on the residential side: “When banks compete, you win.” It’s similar to what we do on the commercial real estate side with lenders. What makes us really new, to commercial real estate, is that our co-founder, Ira Zlotowitz, was the co-founder of a top 10 mortgage broker that made over $5 billion a year. of transactions with commercial real estate owners on one side and lenders. the other. He had these connections. Then I moved to the tech side and the lending side, creating lending programs. This technological pedigree allows us to offer even more value to borrowers.
Exactly how does GPARENCY’s approach to lending relationships help borrowers close deals at better rates?
We have profiles on over 3,000 lenders across the country, so no matter where the property is, we can narrow down the list and have our team contact you. No other brokerage firm or lending intermediary has collected the depth of data we have on lenders and their offerings. We’ve already done business with over 200 of these lenders in the past 12-18 months, so our numbers are based on actual activity, not just what they tell us – it’s not about what you say, but what you do. We validate our profile data with transactional data.
We also offer free services on our website to any current or aspiring commercial real estate owner. They enter their acquisition preferences, and we’ll match them to the optimal lender. It’s really unique. This is the transparency element of GPARENCY that we offer to the public – complete information on 3,000 lenders – and it will only grow. Let’s say you are transacting in Omaha, Neb. We know how many lenders trade in Omaha, and how many have taken a quote and were able to close that quote in that market. It’s one of our unique values to borrowers – the openness of that data. Equitable access for all.
In summary, why should general partners turn to GPARENCY rather than your competitors?
Two reasons. First, we will provide you with the most optimal structure for commercial real estate capital. And second, we’ll save you transaction fees with our low-cost subscription model. We have the ability to tap into 3,000 lenders and bring you the best deal. We can do this to see what’s out there in terms of deals, or we can walk you through to closing.