As technological developments revolutionize America’s real estate industry, the property management sector continues to become more efficient and profitable. Platforms offering numerous online collaborations and workflow automation are increasing in popularity, in large part due to their important ability to offer prompt access to accurate and consolidated data and information flows. Kenny Slaught, president and founder of Santa Barbara-based Investec Real Estate Companies, gives his insight into how California developers can best incorporate innovative models and cyber operations in their business strategies.

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The crowdfunding or peer-to-peer lending services in California emerged after the adoption of the Jumpstart Our Business Startup (JOBS) Act in 2012, which significantly expanded the ways in which sponsors raise capital for real estate acquisitions and development. The new law legalized the previously outlawed practice of advertising or openly soliciting private funding from accredited individuals and companies. Those with a net worth of $1,000,000, excluding their personal homes, or with an annual income equalling $200,000 per individual or $300,000 per household, if filed jointly with a spouse, can become an accredited investor. Kenny Slaught has noted how the amendments gave the green light to campaigns and lenders wanting to take part in debt and equity financing, where loans generate income in the form of interest, without a bank involved in the process. The online marketplace has created a new pathway for property owners and funders to peruse current investment offerings, perform due diligence, and maintain dashboards to track how assets and financial product performance.

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Firms offering numerous online collaborations and, according to Kenny Slaught, more workflow automation are increasing in popularity, largely because of their ability to provide prompt access to accurate and concise data and information. New intuitive software and mobile apps, says Slaught, give investors and builders a greater selection of lending and borrowing opportunities across a variety of real estate asset classes and locations. After only a few years in the market, crowdfunding portals have rapidly grown over 150 startups in the US, specializing in real estate. Today, nearly 7% of the U.S population is an accredited investor. In a densely populated setting like Southern California, this number reaches 20%. Software platforms, such as CrowdEngine, RealtyShares, CrowdForce, among others, make it doable to legally raise money from the general public, with some going as far as attracting 90% of equity requirement through these community contributions.

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“These grants are meant to spur on new discoveries that could ultimately save millions of lives,” noted Chris Wilson, Global Health Discovery Director at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “GCE winners are expanding the pipeline of ideas for serious global health and development challenges where creative thinking is most urgently needed.” Kenny Slaught believes that where human lives are concerned, medical research and practice need expanding horizons for quick and holistic global health initiatives.

Respected professor in UCSB’s Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, David Low, will pursue a progressive global health and development research project called “Strategy for development of enteric pathogen-specific phage”. Low’s research, notes Kenny Slaught, focuses on a new way to deal with major bacterial pathogens that are becoming resistant to today’s powerful antibiotics. Low will build phage to selectively target and kill several pathogenic bacteria to eliminate enteric diseases in babies. They will engineer multiple options of the T2 lytic bacteriophage that connect multiple different regions of the BamA protein located on the surface of several pathogenic bacteria, which will mean that they only infect these specified bacteria. Furthermore, they will test the different phage for capacity to eliminate pathogenic E. coli as well as Shigella, and determine whether or not they cause resistance.