By Manu Sharma
‘PropTech is an innovative approach to real estate in which technology optimises the way people research, rent, buy, sell and manage a property. PropTech benefits all parties involved–developers, investors and property management companies as it provides value and cost savings for the users. It results in higher efficiency which in turn can save costs as well,’ says Priyadarshi Mishra, CEO & Founder of Design& Construct, a PropTech start-up into end-to-end construction solutions, in an exclusive interview with Manu Sharma of Silicon Village.
Excerpts of the interview:
Manu Sharma: PropTech has gained a lot of prominence in the past few years with real estate and construction companies adopting technology for both back end as well as front end. Your inputs on this topic.
Priyadarshi Mishra: PropTechis a game changer in the construction industry. On the back end, technology helps us to track our internal operations, coordinating between various departmental heads, monitor the progress of our projects and maintain finances.
On the front end, technology helps customers get real time updates about the work happening at sites, be able to ask questions / communicate in case of any clarification and making payments. Technology surely assists in maintaining a good relationship with our clients.
MS: What are the various technology tools being used by the construction industry? Give a few examples.
We at Design & Construct are also developing a one of its kind construction app, which will be made available on both android and IOS. This app when launched can track all stages of construction starting from design, payments, schedules to handover documents like warranties. This app will be a two-way communications app that will allow our company and clients to communicate with each other.
MS: What kind of an interactive experience do you provide for your clients to view the projects remotely? How has technology like sensors helped in tracking office usage and plan occupancy?
PM: Since most of our clients are busy with their work schedules, we have helped them in viewing their project remotely. We provide CCTV cameras access to all our clients and their families. This helps them in monitoring the construction at their sites all the time. Apart from that we have also created web app group for all our clients to provide real time updates about the site through photos and videos.
MS: How is your company design and construct differently from contractors, architects and other construction companies? What is its USP?
PM: Design &Construct is a unique construction company trying to bring some method to this unorganised sector. The basic difference between us and a local contractor is that we are a team of subject matter experts, starting from trained and experiences architects, experienced project managers and site engineers to well-trained quality managers. The second difference is that we are a brand and we work for customer satisfaction. The third difference is that we are a tech enabled company and use technology extensively in all aspects of construction and communication.
MS: Has adoption of digital technologies in the area of sales and marketing of real estate eased the problems during the last and this lockdowns?
PM: Adoption of digital technologies has been a boon for the construction industry. We use tech-based sales and marketing processes. For marketing we use different social media platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook to generate leads and share info about our company. For sales we use a tool called Leadcon to boost our sales as it helps us in tracking all aspects of our sales.
MS: Which markets are you currently operational in both locally and overseas?
PM: Design & Construct is currently operational is Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Mysuru.
MS: How big is your team in India? How many handle technology related jobs?
PM:As of now, we are close to 35+ employees in the company. Out of 35, 20 are based out f Bengaluru and 15 out of Hyderabad and Mysuru. Almost all our employees use some or the other tech app for their jobs.
MS: Can you please tell us about the plans for this fiscal? Are you planning to expand your footprint in India?
PM: We have currently 50+ projects with us with total project value of around Rs 40 lakhs each which makes us close to Rs 20Cr of net project value. We are planning to touch Rs 100Cr in project value before the end of this fiscal with more than 200 projects spread across all cities.