ReTenant, a startup that graduated from i2E's inaugural Immersion Program group this summer, is using mobile technology to help improve communications between property managers and tenants.
ReTenant was just a concept when it entered the Immersion Program with i2E.
The company has progressed from concept to providing a viable application, serving paying customers, and having a market-based plan for expanding functionality.
Now ReTenant is in serious discussions with potential investors.
From the beginning, ReTenant's solution has been based on feedback from potential customers.
Scott Ayres, a co-founder, was having a casual conversation with a property manager — a friend of a friend — who mentioned that resident retention was his single biggest business challenge, that tenant turnover could reach 50 percent a year.
Ayres investigated and found out that even though ours is a society that increasingly favors texting and depends on mobile devices, many apartment complexes and other residential properties continue to rely on fliers or emails to get information to residents.
He came up with an idea for instantaneous mobile communication with residents to improve service and increase the sense of tenant community, an added value that could help make residents less likely to move.
During the Immersion Program, by talking to dozens of property companies and tenants, the co-founders developed ReTenant's unique solution — a “white label” mobile application that is easy for a property management company to brand and distribute through an apps store and that is easily accepted by residents.
Scott Meacham is president and CEO of i2E Inc., a nonprofit corporation that mentors many of the state's technology-based startup companies. i2E receives state appropriations from the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology. Email Meacham at i2E_Comments@i2E.org.