Marcus Moufarrige, founder and chief executive of proptech firm ility, on how he got started in property and his cultural recommendations.
How did you join the property industry?
From a really young age, I had always been interested in property. I would read property listings and dream of one day being in the industry. This was all spurred on when my dad started a flexible workspace business when I was six years old, where I saw first hand what this would be like.
What does your job entail?
I tend to do everything given I am the CEO and founder of a proptech start-up. I am very hands-on, something I have always enjoyed. Although I am technical and have a good grasp of technology, I am not a coder. So, while I am across everything, having a highly skilled CTO is essential.
What do you like most about the property industry?
There is always a deal. There is a lot of room for value in property. It is not that challenging to create value, especially as the industry moves like lava in relation to technology and customer service.
And what do you dislike most about it?
The industry is notoriously slow when it comes to adopting technology and, ultimately, lags behind in reaping its benefits. My hope is that this will change with the onboarding of open-minded people who see technology as integral and essential to the sustainability of the industry.
What would you change about the property industry?
My goal and ultimately that of ility is to close the chasm between property operators and technology by allowing them to package, price and distribute their property products to a modern customer with changing needs.
What barriers or challenges have you overcome?
There is an overwhelming resistance to change, very often led by technology and innovation teams within the property businesses themselves. I know that is likely a controversial and unpopular view, but it is true.
What are you most proud of in your career?
Taking the leap to quit my career after 25 years and pursuing the entrepreneurial path. I started ility with nothing more than a PowerPoint presentation and we now deliver our solution across 80m sq ft.
What do you value in people?
It has got to be honesty. I think it is all too easy to forget the importance of open and honest communication in this day and age. Tackling issues or problems with these values in mind makes for better business.
What advice would you give someone starting a career in the property industry?
Listen, learn and then make changes. Only then will you make effective change. It is advice I have always stood by and I have seen the benefit in myself and others.