KIWI and Deutsche Wohnen

Video interview with PropTech Startups

User

Integration partners

Provider

Deutsche Wohnen
Deutsche Wohnen is one of Europe’s leading property companies.

KIWI
The KIWI platform opens your door digitally. Indispensable for housing companies.

User

Calenberger Immobilien
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consetetus adipscing elitr, sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt ut labore.

Integration parter

Partner XY
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consetetus adipscing elitr, sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt ut labore.

Provider

EverReal
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consetetus adipscing elitr, sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt ut labore.

Together with Immobilienmanager, we at Ambivation would like to give startups a stage to present their innovation potential with our PropTech / ConTech video interviews. At the same time, we want to show the real estate industry new solutions to existing challenges and problems as well as culturally methodically build bridges between companies and startups. Today we talk to Karsten Nölling from PropTech KIWI and their cooperation partner Mr. Stoll from Deutsche Wohnen. Here you can watch the video interview in full length.

Christoph: Today I would like to welcome Karsten Nölling from KIWI. Karsten, welcome! To start, Karsten, who are you and what do you do?

Karsten: Thank you! My name is Karsten Nölling, I am the managing director of KIWI and I have been doing this for six and a half years now. I am responsible for KIWI as its managing director. I focus entirely on marketing, sales and product, and am therefore very close to our customers in the housing industry. We offer a digital access system for precisely these customers. That means we firmly believe that the physical key is one of the things that digitalization will ultimately make obsolete.

This needs answers that go beyond the individual door. We are firmly convinced that, in the end, this will be an access platform, where access rights are then assigned under the sovereignty of the housing law. This will also make access at the door much easier. It doesn’t matter whether it’s for residents, janitors, service providers or nursing services. That’s ultimately what we’re doing, so it’s a cloud solution, with a clear focus on the housing industry and real estate industry at large. We have a very simple vision, which I think has already come out. With KIWI, we believe in easy access in a world without keys.

Christoph: Great vision! I’m very curious to hear more about a concrete example of cooperation. So, how do you work with your customers, and what are the added values for the customer?

Karsten: We have actually developed various cooperations in the eight years that KIWI has been on the market. There are many different examples. Most recently, we launched a steel door with Novoferm in November and December. We had previously developed this with the Arbonia Group, with the PRÜM and GARANT brands. As large and leading door manufacturers, they asked themselves what digitalization would do to their core product. We have now had the opportunity for some time to offer KIWI invisibly in a door at the factory. We also have other partnerships and cooperations because we believe that digitization of real estate can only work together in the end. I think partnerships are a very important topic there. With established company sizes, with large service providers, with other PropTechs, keyword tenant apps, are always very important at this point. And thus, diverse experience.

YouTube

By loading the video, you agree to YouTube's privacy policy.
Learn more

Load video

I think for the interview today it’s quite exciting to talk about Deutsche Wohnen a bit more. Markus Stoll (member of the management of Deutsche Wohnen Technology) will also say a few sentences about this in a moment. We have had a major cooperation since 2017. This came about because they decided, as part of thinking about digitization and process simplification, to make the entire portfolio key-free, at least on the shell, i.e., as far as front doors or basement access doors are concerned. And then we want to roll out the entire system to 17,000 apartment buildings. We think that’s very exciting. For us, for Deutsche Wohnen, but also for others. To learn how a very small company like KIWI with 50 people and a large DAX company like Deutsche Wohnen can pull together. That would be a topic where we can talk about it for a few more sentences.

Christoph: Perfect! It’s great that we also have Mr. Stoll with us to talk about it right away. Mr. Stoll, thank you very much for taking the time for our video interview today. I would be interested to know how Deutsche Wohnen benefits from the cooperation with KIWI?

Markus Stoll: Thank you for the question! My name is Markus Stoll, I’m forty-eight years old, a family man, and I’ve been with Deutsche Wohnen for a good year and a half. Or rather with the management at Deutsche Wohnen Technology. That’s exactly what it’s all about, dealing with new technologies. I think the first thing that’s important as a real estate company is to develop a target image. What digitization means, what it means for the company, what it means for our building, and what it will mean for our tenants.

And relatively quickly, we had to discuss approaches. How do you go into a residential building in the future? If you look at other industries, such as the hotel industry, it’s already common practice that you no longer get a key at the reception desk, but a key card. And move digitally through the building. We also see that digital access is the future. And if you have the option of entering a building digitally, with a smartphone or a transponder, there are of course many more possibilities. You have identification possibilities, via a transponder you can also handle other services via it. When you have a building, you should always make sure that things fit together. That there are not always separate services, apps and things like that. Instead, you should always look at it from the tenant’s point of view.

We’ve made progress in terms of the discussions, which was also a bit before my time. You then think about digitization in stages, which is what we did with KIWI. You learn from each other in a project like this. In terms of our history, we are certainly not a company that invented digitization. Instead, we look at how things work, how they work with our process. This is a win-win situation, so to speak, because in the end both KIWI and Deutsche Wohnen can benefit. Of course, we’re also trying to see which topics pay off in terms of digitization. In the end, this will certainly be the entire process of management. If you imagine such large housing estates, we have large estates with 10,000-15,000 residential units, there is constant movement, Telekom or some craftsman or someone has to enter the houses all the time. Digitization is really a big issue here in order to optimize processes.

Christoph: Thank you very much, Mr. Stoll!

Great, now we have discussed the concrete case study. Maybe as a next step, can you share a few tips and tricks for collaboration? What do companies and startups have to pay attention to?

Karsten: Well, I think a very important step is, of course, that you first – this is now very general, but nevertheless correct – that you first put yourself in the partner’s shoes. So, which problem do you actually solve for your partner? And in our case, with Deutsche Wohnen, this is a completely different problem than we solve with some of the other partners mentioned (for example, large door manufacturers such as PLÜM and GARANT, the Arbonia Group or Novoferm). For Deutsche Wohnen we solve the problem of access, administration and management of the stock. Then the question is, do you start with a specific customer center or with central processes? And when you go into a customer center, what is actually the partner’s level of digitization as well, how many projects have already been run there? As KIWI, we also notice time and again – we are currently doing around 10-15 large projects per month with customers in the housing industry – that there is a very different degree of digitization know-how among the employees.

We notice again and again that we are a spearhead. That means it’s also about change management. We also hear this from other PropTechs time and again. An important part is simply bringing in cultural change and then, of course, accompanying it, especially with such large projects. You don’t just sell a product once, that’s very important. This is true for more and more products and services, which is really a service. And to accompany them and also to deepen them again. If we take another look at Deutsche Wohnen, we’ve been in a partnership process for over three years to install KIWI and to transfer the entire use into the details. We still notice, there is so much potential, what can still be done, which processes still need all the key, what is the inventory, what is new construction. That’s also something that’s really a start for learning together, but that can work very successfully. Those are a few more comments on the specific collaborations.

Christoph: Perfect, thank you very much for that! If I summarize that again, it’s very important to understand the customer well, to understand their processes well, so with that the problem, and to make sure to build and deepen the relationship over time?

Karsten: Yes, that’s very important. In the end, it’s a journey that you start together. And I think especially with PropTechs, and that applies to KIWI as well, that don’t have a fully developed product yet, we develop everything very quickly, that really should be seen as a joint development. For example, because of the feedback we received from Deutsche Wohnen, we have developed another key safe that can be opened with KIWI, but still contains a physical key. Where we resisted a bit, because we said, this is not the future, this is a very sensible use of the bridge. I think examples like this make it clear once again what you have to learn on such a joint journey.

Christoph: That’s a nice example with the physical safe. Let’s move on to the next few years, to look a bit into the future now, what moves you there? What can we expect from KIWI in the next few years?

Karsten: Oh, I think quite a lot of course! In essence, what I said at the beginning. Digitization is something that works through many partners in the industry. It is, as we perceive it, already very fragmented. Even the largest housing companies, if you look at the entire multifamily housing market, do not end up dominating the market. If you look at the service provider structure now, from tradesmen to metering service providers to facility managers, it goes on like that. There are a few larger ones, but at the core it is very fragmented. And accordingly, digitization must always be thought of in a context, keyword ecosystem, keyword digital platform.That is what we have also internalized in the deepest, that with the processes of the housing company and the other participants to combine. Especially when it comes to access, in the end everyone has to get into a building. And we have to talk about open interfaces very quickly. We will continue to push this, keyword API interface, and integration into other systems, keyword ERP, tenant apps we had briefly.

I think that’s what will take us further, but of course also optimizations and improvements to the product itself. And of course, getting bigger in the end. When we talk about digitization, especially when we talk about digital buildings, we are increasingly talking about operating systems and thinking in terms of operating systems. In the end, there won’t be hundreds or thousands of operating systems, there will be fewer. In other words, it’s also very clearly about growth. And these are a few key words where we will be focusing with KIWI in the coming months and years, from a very nice base.

Christoph: Sounds like a very exciting future, I’m looking forward to it. Finally, if people want to reach you and you, what’s the best way to do it?

Karsten: There are actually many ways. We also get feedback that we are relatively present. From a webinar to social media, also on LinkedIn, just write an email info@kiwi.ki , or directly to the sales team with sales@kiwi.ki . Or myself, you can also find the mobile number on the net. There are many ways to contact us. We always look forward to the exchange, the way is typically short.

Christoph: Perfect. And I think you also have a newsletter that informs regularly?

Karsten: Yes, that too, that’s right! Exactly, feel free to sign up for it on the website, kiwi.ki. There is a nice newsletter that doesn’t only inform about KIWI and the product, we try not to do that right now. Of course also, but actually also a lot about topics where we believe that they move the industry, for example digitalization.

Christoph: Perfect, we’ll link that as well. Then we’re already at the end. Karsten, thank you very much for your time and also for your experience reports. And finally, many thanks of course to Mr. Stoll for taking the time to report from his own experience. I wish you continued success and all the best. See you soon!

The interview was conducted by our partner Ambivation. You can find more information here:https://ambivation.com/2021/05/26/digital-key-management-example-of-kiwi-and-deutsche-wohnen/

Solution providers

Solution providers

Unfortunately, there are no matching solution providers.

Business processes

More business processes

Transaction and investment processes
Internal processes
Transaction and investment processes
Transaction and investment processes
Construction and planning processes
Management processes
Internal processes
Management processes

More case studies

More case studies

Sie suchen einen
passenden Geschäftspartner?

Wir unterstützen Ihre Partnersuche
und stellen passende Kontakte für Sie her.

Sie suchen einen passenden Geschäftspartner?

Wir unterstützen Ihre Partnersuche
und stellen passende Kontakte für Sie her.

Was suchen Sie?