Mike Hapoianu, Bright Spaces' MENA Regional Manager, sheds light on the obstacles and prospects of commercial real estate leasing while emphasizing the role of 3D digital twins in overcoming these challenges.
In the ever-evolving world of real estate, innovative technologies are reshaping the way properties are marketed, leased, and experienced. One such technology making waves in the industry is commercial 3D digital twins. These virtual replicas of physical spaces offer a host of benefits for both tenants and property developers, revolutionizing the office leasing process. In this article, we explore the transformative impact of commercial 3D digital twins on office leasing and delve into the advantages they bring to the table.
REM Times spoke to Mike Hapoianu, Regional Manager MENA, Bright Spaces, a 3D digital twin company that works with real estate developers to digitalise their leasing process and elevate their marketing campaigns.
Mike brings with him over 22 years of experience in areas such as business travel, real estate and co-working, and has held numerous management positions, leading operations in the United States, Romania, Poland, Turkey and Bulgaria, and now, MENA.
He gave an insight into how 3D digital twins can be used to enhance office leasing and the future of commercial real estate.
Here’s the excerpts from the interview:
1. How can 3D digital twins be used to enhance the office leasing experience for potential tenants?
Today’s and most importantly, tomorrow’s tenants, are millennials, gen Z’s and newer generations who share one important trait for any business: they are used to working with anything that is available online.
When we’re talking about 3D digital twins for office spaces, we’re talking about a new standard, a strategy that is to become the norm very soon. Any developer or agent using it now is in the early stages of this technology’s development, so they are positioning themselves as innovators and early adopters.
They help tenants visit their spaces virtually, in 3D, and learn everything they need to know whenever and wherever suits them best: availability, location, entries and exits, design possibilities and many more.
2. What are some of the key benefits of using 3D digital twins for office leasing and marketing purposes?
From our experience, developers working with 3D digital twins have witnessed a drop in their marketing costs: there are less printed materials, it’s easier for them to create their own digital promotional materials, remarketing, and tracking becomes more accessible.
When it comes to leasing, the main benefit is related to time. Leasing professionals save valuable time, as 3D digital twins can act as a filter. Interested tenants can view the spaces online and choose to book a live meeting only for the offices that are actually of interest for them.
These tools can be used to actively create pipelines and to present interested prospects not only with static 2D plans or renderings, but with immersive virtual tours that will give them a real feel of what their future space might look like.
3. What are some of the key challenges that companies may face and how can these challenges be overcome?
Commercial real estate is at a turning point right now. A new era has started with the pandemic, when developers were presented with a very interesting opportunity: to embrace the digital transformation and grow into a not-so-tapped environment, which is the online one.
Companies not adopting digitalisation right now, especially in an unstable economy, with new work and office trends and with AI becoming the next big thing, risk their own stability. I think that on one hand, they risk not differentiating themselves from their competition and not standing out in front of the clients as agile, innovative players. On the other hand, they risk not getting aligned with new ESG regulations.
There needs to be a change in how real estate companies operate and 3D digital twins are an important step to take on this journey.
4. How do you see the use of 3D digital twins evolving in the future of commercial real estate leasing and marketing?
As time goes by and these tools prove their usefulness, I think that we are going to see them becoming the main showcasing tool for real estate, across all verticals. Technologies used for the development of 3D digital twins will be mainly AI-enhanced, to provide a seamless and immersive experience to users. Implementation of these twins will happen faster and they will be part of a wider digital universe of each real estate developer.
The future is very much integration and accessibility driven, we’re talking about whole ecosystems that make the usage of these digital replicas very easy and intuitive. Last but not least, I think they will play a very important role in achieving sustainable goals, with companies reducing their carbon footprint by moving some of their activity in an online environment.
Even though these tools will stay at the foundation of future real estate marketing and leasing, I think that this will only emphasize the role of people. Being given back more time and resources to do their work, marketing and leasing professionals will be able to focus on their soft skills, on communication, on negotiation, on understanding clients and completing their experience and expectations.