Three weeks after recruiting veteran Nashville multifamily brokers Russ Oldham and Brett Kingman from CBRE to its Nashville office, Walker & Dunlop — which bills itself as the largest capital provider in the U.S. for multifamily assets — has invested an undisclosed sum in Nashville-based Fortress Technology Solutions. This marks the first outside investment in the local startup.
Founded in 2017 by five Elmington Capital executives — Cary Rosenblum, Ben Brewer, Hunter Nelson, Ryan Seibels and Kerri Davis — FTS is marketed as a commercial real estate property management software for prospects, application, leases, work orders and asset management.
Based in Nashville, Elmington Capital manages more than 180 multifamily properties in 13 states for 40 owners. All five of the FTS founders are still working in roles at Elmington Capital.
In order to take a bite out of the $2.9 billion property management software industry, FTS competes with legacy softwares such as RealPage and Yardi. Combined, the two software systems account for more than 10 percent of the industry market share.
An FTS spokesperson said the company will try to elbow out its competitors with a lower price point and more comprehensive features. Key multifamily relationships like its new one with Walker & Dunlop and its founding one with Elmington Capital could also be part of its growth strategy. The spokesperson added that FTS will try and attract additional outside investment in the future.
Currently, the software is being used by more than 75 owners in 15 states for 300 multifamily assets ranging from 500 to 32,000 units, according to the company. FTS did not disclose how many of its users were Elmington Capital clients or if there would be a discount for Walker & Dunlop clients.
“We’re constantly looking for ways to disrupt the industry and make things smarter, better and faster for our clients,” said Kerri Davis, CEO and president of Fortress.