How A 28-Year-Old Plans To Upend The $81 Trillion Global Real Estate Investment Market
When Ryan Williams traveled to Georgia during a break from classes in 2008 the Harvard undergrad noticed a troubling trend. Homes that just a few months earlier had been marketed for $350,000 were now being sold at auction for maybe $50,000. Williams, of course, was not the first to notice this problem, it was the heart of the subprime credit crisis after all. But he was perhaps the youngest person to view the situation as an opportunity. By the time he graduated in 2010 Williams had bought up hundreds of distressed homes, which he renovated and rented out.
After college Williams had brief stints with Goldman Sachs’ technology, media and telecom group and with Blackstone’s real estate investment division. But he was still itching to do something entrepreneurial. Plus, he felt there was a huge untapped opportunity to improve the opaque process of real estate investment through technology.
Cadre CEO & Co-founder Ryan Williams (right) in conversation with WeWork CEO & Co-founder Adam Neumann. (Courtesy Cadre)
Today, Cadre is an invitation-only platform that directly connects high-net-worth and institutional investors to commercial and multi-family real estate deals. By cutting out middlemen with technology Cadre says it is able to charge lower fees.
“What I have seen is in the financial services space, it is such a big massive industry, but innovation has not been a hallmark. We are at an inflection point where technology will either destroy or recreate a lot of the existing companies that are established today. If you are not a part of the future and the change you will be left in the past.”