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The Propcast

Jan 12, 2022

Summary: Welcome back to season 8 of the Propcast! In this first episode, Louisa speaks with Frank Furman, COO at PadSplit and Kevin Shtofman, COO of NavigatorCRE about what the real role of a COO involves. They discuss how the COO is the ‘CEO of Execution’ and how they support organisations to scale efficiently. Louisa shares some insights on recruiting for the COO role and how the role can look different in each organisation. You’ll learn more about how PadSplit and NavigatorCRE operate in this insightful episode. 

Companies Mentioned:

Shout Outs:



Key Insights From This Episode: 

  • Our view is that if you can make affordable housing higher return than market rate there is no affordable housing challenge because you're leveraging the capital and energy and intellect of the private investor, and they are motivated to solve that. - Frank
  • The most consistent problem I got was we've got a bunch of information that we don't use to make decisions because it's spread out all over the place. It's almost like what Frank's company has done with space we are doing with information and data. - Kevin
  • In the most general sense, to me, a COO role is an execution one. - Frank
  • I really think at the end of the day, the job of the COO is to help a company scale efficiently. - Kevin
  • What I found is the most important role of the COO is finding lieutenants. - Kevin
  • The COO hat really is the CEO of execution. - Kevin
  • I think a few trends that we saw in 2021 are absolutely going to continue in 22. You'll see continued consolidation among proptech firms. - Kevin
  • Finding talent as you grow is still so hard. And that's what keeps me up at night. - Kevin


Keywords: Retail, Operations, Startups, Mergers And Acquisitions

About Our Guests:

Kevin Shtofman

Kevin has spent the last 17 years in the Commercial Real Estate industry, working with clients across four continents. His work at Morgan Stanley, EY, and Deloitte led him to join NavigatorCRE as their chief operating officer just over two years ago.  Kevin has presented on stages in 27 countries, discussing the future of real estate technology and covering topics around Blockchain, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and Digital Twins. He and his wife Katie live in Dallas with their two daughters, Avery and Lily. 

NavigatorCRE is a patented, cloud-based business intelligence platform that serves enterprise owners, operators, investors, and managers across all property types, stages, and geographies…and works on any device, without an app. Over 2 Billion square feet sit on the Navigator platform.

Frank Furman 

Frank is the Chief Operating Officer at PadSplit, a co-living startup that is dedicated to solving the affordable housing crisis. Prior to PadSplit, he worked as a Category Director at Georgia Pacific and as an Engagement Manager for McKinsey & Company in London and Atlanta. A former infantry officer in the United States Marine Corps, he commanded at the platoon and company levels and served two tours in Afghanistan. He has a B.S in Aeronautical Engineering from the United States Naval Academy and an M.S. in Applied Physics from Johns Hopkins University. He and his wife Caelyn live in Atlanta, and have two sons, Rudyard and Byron.

PadSplit is a privatized housing company focused on providing affordable houses. They have over 1,700 units (within just 3.5 years), including single and multi-family properties. PadSplit also increases yield by more than 100 percent for property owners by using existing housing stock as shared housing. PadSplit was founded in 2017 to leverage housing as a vehicle for financial independence for low-income workers that serve our communities.

About Our Host

Louisa Dickins

Louisa started her career in property working at a well-known estate agency in London. Realising her people skills, she moved over to Lloyd May to pursue a career in recruitment. She now is a Director at LMRE, who are a specialist recruitment firm driven by PropTech and recruitment professionals, and Louisa oversees their 5 core areas. Louisa co-founded LMRE and provides a constructive recruitment platform to the new disruptors in real estate. Louisa is also on the board of Directors at UK PropTech Association (UKPA).

About LMRE

LMRE believe there is a better way to recruit. LMRE focus on a more comprehensive, client led focus delivering exceptional talent to the place at the time. They are passionate about the industry and passionate about people's careers. LMRE spend time with each client to become and an extension of the business, and their transparency and core values help them grow with the sector. LMRE simplify recruitment and innovate with our clients and evolve the people driven, PropTech community.