New Efficient Way to Underwrite Commercial Real Estate Cash Flow; Interview With Parag Goswami, CEO of Clik.ai

Clik.ai in our earlier engagement in 2020 shared with TechBullion, an enterprise B2B SaaS company disrupting the commercial real estate market. Clik.ai has now opened its AI-powered underwriting software via Smart Extract to allow its underwriting platform to be hosted on clients’ private servers – bringing mass amounts of efficiency to the ecosystems they already know and love. The CEO, Parag Goswami will be sharing more details with us in this interview.

Please tell us a little more about yourself?

My name is Parag Goswami, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Clik.ai. I was born and raised in India and have always been interested in technology. My first job in technology was as a software engineer at iTrust Financial Advisors. After that, I founded HouseThat.in and Integrand Analytics. HouseThat.in was the first online property listing website that, in combination with Google Maps in India, generated over $10 million in property sales in two years. Integrand Analytics was a leading commercial real estate focused knowledge processing outsourcing firm that supported over $7 billion in loan and investment transactions across the globe between 2013-2018. 

I launched Clik.ai in 2017 and now my focus is upgrading technology in the commercial real estate (CRE) industry through software creation.  

Tell us more about Clik.ai and the new services you are bringing to the real estate market?

Clik.ai’s goal is to bring efficiency to the real estate market through updated technology through the means of artificial intelligence (AI). Our current software services commercial real estate underwriters directly and alleviates tedious tasks they face daily. 

Clik.ai is programmed with AI to read, write, and process big data from financial documents like rent rolls and operating/income statements. It allows asset managers to easily drag and drop existing Excel or PDF files and automatically extract and analyze relevant information contained in these documents to quickly determine property risk, value, and estimated cash flows and digitize them into a database. The bonus of using AI is the reduced risk of human error when processing massive amounts of data.

Clik.ai recently opened its software via Smart Extract, who is this for?

We have witnessed increased efficiency when Clik.ai is used in combination with other platforms clients may be using. For this reason, we recently launched our newest initiative, “Smart Extract”. Smart Extract allows other software providers to integrate and bring Clik.ai’s rent roll and underwriting extraction AI technology within their software via iFrame and API. Smart Extract is designed for any technology company that is building loan servicing, asset management or cashflow analytics software who could extend the benefits of Clik.ai’s productivity and automated underwriting engine to their customers. 

Smart Extract helps software providers extract normalized data from financial documents and as a collaboration, it provides users with a spreadsheet of data from OS PDFs or any like document that can be reviewed, edited, and saved for further processing by the underwriters and asset managers. With Smart Extract, other CRE software companies will increase stickiness in their products and a greatly enhanced product experience for their users. 

Before now, what problems were underwriters facing with financial documents such as rent rolls and operating/income statements?

The biggest issue to note is the amount of time underwriters were wasting by manually inputting each detail to make accurate property evaluations. Building an accurate cash flow model or underwriting model of a single property can take hours, and sometimes, even days due to large amounts of data input from many pdfs and scan docs. Additionally, when underwriting multiple properties at once, the risk of human error increases significantly – not ideal in an industry that evaluates million-dollar properties. 

So far, how has Clik.ai benefited companies implementing the software, do you have any success stories to share with us?

Clik.ai’s clients include Merchants Capital, Bellwether Enterprises, Northmarq Capital, Lument, and several other notable banking institutions interested in underwriting and servicing more loans, staying ahead of competitors, and closing more deals through its automated underwriting software platform. 

For example, Merchants Capital, the mortgage banking subsidiary of $7.9 billion Merchants Bank, is one of many CRE firms currently rolling out underwriting technology from Clik.ai. Clik.ai has helped Merchants extract and classify data on loan applications, such as rent roll and property cash flow, and convert that data from PDF into a comprehensive format for the loan servicing database. Automating Merchants’ loan origination and servicing process through Clik.ai has exceeded the lender’s overall digitization efforts. 

In addition to Merchants Capital, Clik.ai’s platform boosted analyst efficiency by 100% across teams at Bellwether Enterprise. Clik.ai helped the company with its $7.9 billion loan volume and annual servicing portfolio of $31.2 billion in 2019. Due to its rapidly growing portfolio, Bellwether Enterprise began using Clik.ai to expedite the underwriting process while keeping costs low.

With events like the current global pandemic, why is automated underwriting more important now and why is Clik.ai the best option?

Incorporating an automated underwriting software such as Clik.ai is not only saving time, but also money. During this uncertain time, businesses need to consider the most efficient options in automating workflow to reduce daily costs and optimize towards a quicker time to bid on deals. Time is money and the less time it takes to underwrite a loan or investment property; the more businesses can save for future initiatives or possible emergencies. 

Angela Scott-Briggs: Editor, TechBullion.com | Interested in Innovations in Business, Finance, and Technology .
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