Indianapolis-based High Alpha has launched another studio company, this time focusing on the real estate sector. The venture studio says Shaker’s software platform provides a streamlined transaction management process for real estate agents and teams, while also bringing clients into the fold. The company was co-founded by Chris Lucas, who has served as an entrepreneur-in-residence at High Alpha and led marketing and business development at Formstack in Indianapolis.
In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Lucas said Shaker’s platform fills a gap for real estate agents.
“There are a lot of tools out there that are point solutions, but there’s nothing that really brings the client into the fold and there’s a lot of just antiquated and kind of clunky technologies out there in real estate,” said Lucas. “So coming from a background of software and really appreciating the tools that are already out there from marketing and sales software, we realized there was a need for better tools and a full platform that brings the client to the center.”
Lucas cites a survey in which 68% of clients said the lack of communication and transparency in the process was the most frustrating part of buying and selling a home. He says the goal is to create a client experience that will help drive referrals for real estate agents, “which is the lifeblood of their business.”
Lucas co-founded the company alongside his former Formstack colleagues Ashley Walsh and Michael Mattax. He says the company currently is a team of four, but there are plans to hire additional software engineer and customer service employees.
“We’re looking to really build out this platform. We think there’s a big opportunity in real estate technology. The market is ripe; if you look at kind of everything that’s happened with COVID, real estate and home sales have continued to surge and so real estate folks and agents and teams are really looking for technology that’s going to give them a leg up as they continue deal with a really good housing market right now.”
While many businesses are struggling or closing due to the pandemic, Lucas says he is lucky to be able to launch a company during such a difficult time.
“I think real estate and real estate teams are really going to continue to grow because it’s a good way for new agents to come into the fold, into the real estate market, and teams have not really had a focus from a software and technology standpoint and so we think that we’re really filling a need by focusing on those kind of real estate teams and they’re going to continue to grow as new agents come in.”
Shaker says, since launching its private beta earlier this year, it has worked with real estate teams at Caldwell Banker, RE/MAX, and Berkshire Hathaway.
Lucas says Shaker’s platform fills a gap for real estate agents.