I had to come to San Francisco, had to see them for myself. Eight years ago I attended this conference by mistake, and it made me to see the writing on the wall not only in real estate, but print journalism. This is the conference that inspired me to start a blog called DallasDirt and, ultimately, my own CandysDirt.com. And here we are.
So it was very cool to see one of the Golden Guys of Dallas real estate, Clay Stapp, standing tall in Start-Up Alley with his partner, James Bohan-Pitt, rocking it at Real Estate Connect 2015 and showing off HipPocket. Connect is the industry’s premier tech event of the year, and it gathers top agents, brokers, mortgage companies, industry leaders, inspiration and ideas from the best and brightest (Spencer Rascoff to Ryan O’Hara to Barbara Corcoran to Pete Flynt to Guy Kawasaki) with a focus on technology. Because technology is what has
traumatized changed the industry. Entrepreneurs from across the spectrum display their latest tech inventions to make agents’ and brokers’ lives easier and yeah, to maybe catch the attention of some Silicon Valley seed money.
But there is always a twist: This year, Larry Altschul spilled inside info on how he uses high net worth individuals’ wine and food preferences to his advantage. (It costs a lot of money in wine and private planes!) Altschul is the senior vice president of customer development at MGM Resorts International, where he’s charged with hunting down “whales,” individuals ready to bet at least $100,000 at casinos. This is the way Brad Inman, a former real estate editor, keeps his audience engaged and connected. Like most journalists, he likes to poke the bear, and he did, calling pocket listings a major issue for the industry.
I caught up with Clay and James on Wednesday morning when I arrived — they were both busy talking at the HipPocket booth to layers of people, including reps from the National Association of Realtors. Finally, after their 2 PM national radio interview, I broke through the crowds and grabbed a few minutes with the NOW FAMOUS founders of HipPocket and I said, hell, let’s just video this. By the way, DD Flynn, VP of Berkshire Hathaway Dallas, shot our video THANKS DD:
I don’t think I’ve ever seen James more excited about anything EXCEPT maybe the upcoming birth of his twins. He later told me that right after they are born, he’s heading to another conference in Vegas to build HipPocket — recall the guys rocked it at TechCrunch and the company was featured in Tech.co. and scored as the hottest local startup. And when 14 startups strutted their stuff at The Dallas Entrepreneurial Center, HipPocket & HedgeChatter snagged the titles of Hottest Startups in Dallas!
And now they are in San Francisco. Stay tuned to this one.