Real estate firm Colliers International and Techstars have announced the 2020 Colliers Proptech Accelerator program, which helps proptech startups fine-tune business plans and explore pilots and partnerships, has been moved to 2021.

“There is more incredible innovation coming and I am excited to see it reflected in next year’s cohort.”

The organization said the decision to postpone the Toronto-based accelerator was made due to considerations regarding the health and safety of program participants during the COVID-19 pandemic. The accelerator’s last cohort began in September 2019 and ended in December.

“Our commitment to the Colliers Proptech Accelerator is unwavering. [Managing director of Techstars] Ben Liao and Techstars will continue to build and enhance the program across multiple fronts through 2020 in partnership with Colliers, with the goal of making 2021 the best year yet,” said Zach Michaud, vice president of strategic investments at Colliers International.

Rather than hosting a new cohort for this year, Colliers said it is working with its 2018 and 2019 alumni companies to deliver virtual tools that help people and businesses navigate the new challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has surfaced. Michaud said digital tools, developed by companies like Finneo, RealAR, and Booqed, could give Colliers’ clients an edge in the current business environment.

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“As COVID-19 accelerates the commercial real estate industry’s transition to digital solutions, we are seeing the potential benefits of our partnerships move into sharper focus,” said Michaud. “The business tools they are providing such as lease abstraction, virtual office tours, and workplace occupancy analytics give our experts and clients a competitive advantage in these challenging times.”

Colliers and Techstars join the many accelerator programs that have opted to postpone or virtually host their programming due to the pandemic. Techstars’ Startup Weekend was held virtually last month, and NEXT Canada is also hosting its Venture Reveal on Zoom this week. Techstars has plans to run other accelerator programs virtually, with details on different terms and cohorts here.

All of Techstars’ global programs running from June to September will be held virtually with a virtual demo day. The organization is also implementing virtual committees and screenings for future cohorts and plans to reassess when live events or meetings will be held in person.

Image source Colliers International via YouTube.

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