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NAR’s REACH Labs Makes First Multi-Association Alliance

REALTOR® associations and an MLS band together in the Chicago area to bring more tech innovation to its members.

August 1, 2022

Chicagoland REALTOR® associations and a multiple listing service are teaming up to bring more real estate tech innovations to its members, billed as the first multi-association and MLS to form a REACH Labs program. REACH Labs is a National Association of REALTORS® program that identifies and showcases innovative early-stage startups that relate to the real estate industry, including in the areas of mortgage finance, home services, insurance and more.

This latest REACH Lab will be jointly run by the Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS®, the Chicago Association of REALTORS, the North-Shore Barrington Association of REALTORS, and Midwest Real Estate Data (MRED).

“We are thrilled to establish the first multi-association REACH Labs program in Chicago, where the startup scene is thriving,” says Dave Garland, managing partner with Second Century Ventures, a strategic investment arm of NAR that launched REACH Labs in 2021. “This partnership will set the stage for tech entrepreneurs to scale their businesses by meeting the needs of a dynamic REALTOR® community.”

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The Chicagoland associations and MLS say that the REACH Labs will allow them to connect their members to the latest technology innovations. Chicago boasts a vibrant startup scene; tech firm startups raised $7 billion in 2021.

Second Century Ventures launched REACH Labs in the third quarter of 2021 with the Austin Board of REALTORS®, the Denver Metro Association of REALTORS®, the Miami Association of REALTORS®, and the Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS®. It has continued to expand its program to more associations since that time to provide real estate professionals with more connections to the real estate tech startup space. REACH Labs helps associations connect with the startup community and find new innovations for their members.