I wrote recently about how investing in talent is very important. It’s a theme I find running throughout my investments: Does this team have the smarts, skills, and drive to pull off something big? My latest investment in the SOLOpro team is a clear yes across the board.
If you are looking for talent, Tommy Sowers is someone who grabs your attention. He is a natural leader with a very well-decorated resume, including a serving as Assistant Secretary in the United States Department of Veterans Affairs—the youngest Obama appointment with Senate confirmation for a Secretary at the time. Like me, he is also an alum of McKinsey San Francisco. I met Tommy through a friend and investor while Tommy was starting SOLOpro with his brother Shayne, a long-time realtor, and their CTO Narayan.
The problem is that homebuyers are paying far too much in realtor fees. SOLOpro solves this by empowering buyers and agents to take control of the home buying experience. They offer a marketplace of real estate agents offering unbundled fee-for-services and offer buyers up to a full 3% rebate on their home purchase.
Savvy homebuyers do not need the full-service realtor. They just need help with a few tasks and they save tens of thousands of dollars by doing so. These savvy home buyers are the market SOLOpro serves—the services they need, on the schedule they want, at the prices they set.
With traction in several markets, SOLOpro is iterating rapidly. They have built a strong team with decades of leadership in real estate, technology, and the special forces. With an innovative product, they are bringing consumer real estate into the modern era. We are participating in a $2 million seed round with Lowe’s and several great venture investors.