Hightower, a “command center for commercial real estate,” today announced that it has raised a $6.5 million Series A round led by its existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners and Thrive Capital. Previous investors RRE Ventures, Red Swan Ventures, David Tisch, Lee Linden and Brandon Shorenstein also participated in this round, which comes just eight months after the company’s $2.1 million seed round.
Commercial real estate — maybe even more so than the residential real estate business — is not known for being the most high-tech of industries. Bessemer partner Ethan Kurzweil, for example, likens the industry to a “lost tribe in the Amazon,” which is a bit harsh. As Hightower CEO and founder Brandon Weber notes, “commercial leasing is a business that deserves better tools” and — surprise, surprise — Hightower wants to be that tool.
The company’s services are geared toward both owners and brokers. Owners can use it to manage almost all of the aspects of leasing their buildings. That includes managing their deal pipeline and working with existing tenants, as well as taking track of their marketing efforts. The company also offers phone and tablet apps for brokers, who can use the service to track prospects and the state of their current negotiations. By default, brokers are mobile and need to be able to easily access all of their information when doing a tour with clients, for example, so the Hightower team says it’s focused on making those apps as easy to use as possible for brokers.
In addition, Hightower offers its users a number of analytics, as well as document management capabilities.
Hightower says it is currently working with about 40 commercial landlords and institutional investors in 36 markets who manage “100s of millions of square feet” across 360 commercial properties through the tool. The company is based in New York and has 17 employees.
“In the eight months since our seed investment in Hightower, we’ve watched them win over commercial real estate with a platform that gives owners and brokers exactly what they want– simplicity, mobility and visibility,” said Kurzweil in a statement today.
The company plans to use these new funds to continue developing its product, but also to expand to new markets in Canada and Europe.