Timeshare apartment sales used to be the butt of many a joke. The pinnacle of the hard sell, if you lasted long enough while they tried to get you to sign on the dotted line, you could walk out of the room with a free microwave oven.
If ever there was an industry that needed an overhaul, it is this one.
And that’s precisely what Reidao, the Singapore-based company that is digitizing real estate assets on the blockchain, is hoping to achieve.
Today, Reidao has announced Crowdvilla, its not-for-profit organization (NPO) for sharing holiday homes on the blockchain. Because of its NPO status, Crowdvilla is legally bound to use all its fundraising for the sole purpose of acquiring holiday homes for its community and building its platform.
With advice from Federico Folcia, the former CEO of Roomorama — a home-sharing platform based in Singapore — Crowdvilla is using blockchain technology to create a sharing economy platform for serviced holiday homes, all of which will be co-owned by Crowdvilla community members.
Users will be able to book holiday homes, or rooms for business use, using a utility token — Crowdpoints — that are generated through Crowdvilla tokens (CRVs). As part of the service, Crowdvilla will manage the upkeep of these properties, absorbing costs such as maintenance fees, service fees, cleaning fees, and taxes through the use of Crowdpoints.
“We will have a website, similar to other room-booking websites, that will list all available properties around the globe,” said Darvin Kurniawan, cofounder and CEO. “They can stay for as long as they want providing they have enough points/tokens to book the particular property. It works similar to other accommodation-based services in that it will be on a first-come, first-serve basis.”
The platform won’t put limitations on stays, which makes this an exciting prospect not just for those needing a vacation, but for digital nomads and remote workers too.
“Users can make any room booking, as long as they have enough points/tokens, and as long as the room is still available for the duration,” Kurniawan said.
So why use blockchain technology to disrupt this particular marketplace? The likes of Airbnb and Breather have shown that the sharing economy works for both living and working spaces without the need for tokenization or distributed ledger technologies.
“We are using blockchain technology for the ability to create digital assets and tokens,” Kurniawan said. “We are not creating something new technologically. The property of this digital asset is that it is freely transferable, while it also has some conditions imposed on it — for example, the ability to burn and remove the tokens from circulation once they are used up.”
But it is the distribute ledger that offers the most tangible benefit for Crowdvilla.
“We want property sharing to be transparent to the participants,” Kurniawan said. “This way, token holders can see exactly the number of tokens in circulation, and those that have been used up, and that translates to the actual utilization of the properties.”
So what’s next for Crowdvilla?
“Our immediate milestone is to complete the token sale; this will enable us to kickstart property acquisitions,” Kurniawan said. “After that we can consider any type of asset, not just holiday properties, to be operated within a true sharing economy.”
The Crowdvilla token (CRV) sale event will be held in March 2018, and the tokens can be obtained in exchange for Ethereum.