Middle East Investors Summit

Online, February 23, 2021


Tuesday, February 23, 2021, 5:00–6:00 p.m. GST
Tuesday, February 23, 2021, 8:00–9:00 am EST

In this Middle East-focused AFIRE virtual event, panelists will provide broad insights on market trends in technology and real estate—and then take a deep dive into some of the key megatrends leveraged by technology on the housing sector.

What does the future of connectivity mean for single-family and multifamilty assets, and both the viability and long-term sustainability of the sector? What does “connected” housing mean for the future of communities, neighborhoods, and cities? And what are the key trends institutional investors should be tracking to gain more exposure in both housing and proptech?

With moderation from leading AFIRE members, this discussion hosts K.C. Cleary and Dylan Emmett, partners on the strategic advisory team at Fifth Wall, the largest venture capital firm focused on the global real estate industry and property technology for the built world—in addition to in-depth insights from Lucas Haldeman, Founder and CEO of Smartrent, a smart home automation company that builds and deploys solutions for property owners, managers, renters and builders.

This event is open to all members and invited guests.


Demetrios Barnes is the co-founder and chief operating officer of SmartRent, where he leads the support, field operations and account services teams. With over a decade of experience in property management operations, Demetrios is passionate about helping owners and operators understand the innovations technology can produce, while forging strong interpersonal relationships and participating in thought leadership discussions.

Prior to co-founding SmartRent, he was vice president of technology for Colony Starwood Homes, director of property management and technology with Beazer Pre-Owned Rental Homes, and a regional manager for several multifamily companies. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Arizona State University.

K.C. is a Partner on the Strategic Advisory team at Fifth Wall.

Prior to joining Fifth Wall, K.C. spent five years in management consulting at McKinsey, where he led transformations for consumer and retail clients. In addition, K.C. was a founding member of a new initiative at McKinsey to deliver advanced analytics insights to real estate owners and their tenants.

K.C. started his career in the private wealth management group at Goldman Sachs, serving ultra high-net-worth families, institutions, and endowments before moving to New York to join the group’s management team.

K.C. is from Detroit and currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children. He graduated from Harvard College with a BA in economics and from the Anderson School at the University of California Los Angeles with an MBA.

CJ Edmonds leads the revenue growth of the business through new customer acquisition, customer expansion, and customer retention. Prior to joining SmartRent, he ran the sales organization at G5 for nine years, delivering digital marketing solutions to the real estate sector. There he had a consistent track record of 25%+ YOY growth and was integral in growing the company from $4M to $40M ARR. CJ has more than 22 years of executive-level management experience in the SaaS and wireless industries, helping companies like NTT/Verio and Nextel Communications grow revenue in new markets to more than $200 Million. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Economics from Saint Mary’s College of California.

Dylan Emmett is a Partner on the Strategic Advisory team at Fifth Wall, where he drives innovation and value creation for our corporate partners.

Prior to joining Fifth Wall, Dylan was an Engagement Manager at McKinsey, where he drove impactful marketing and sales transformation initiatives for Fortune 500 companies. Dylan also previously led pricing and M&A efforts at Edcon, the largest apparel retailer in southern Africa.

Dylan grew up in South Africa and lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two young kids. He earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and a Bachelor of Business Science in finance from the University of Cape Town.

Lucas Haldeman has spent over two decades developing web based technology for the real estate industry, initially as employee no. 18 at AllApartments.com, the first site to publish a national database of apartment communities online, and after acquisition was with Homestore.com (now Move, Inc.) through a successful IPO.

Prior to founding SmartRent, he served as the Chief Technology and Marketing Officer of Colony Starwood Homes. The custom platform developed by Mr. Haldeman and his team were instrumental in cost effectively helping the business acquire, renovate, lease and manage more than 40,000 single family homes in 12 states.

Before his time at Colony Starwood homes, Mr. Haldeman served as the Chief Information and Marketing Officer for Beazer Pre-Owned Rental Homes where he also led the firm’s IT systems and marketing efforts. Prior to 2012, Mr. Haldeman was the founder and managing partner of Nexus Property Management, a boutique, technology-focused fee management firm. Previously, Mr. Haldeman was a Vice President at RENT.net and REALTOR.com, part of Move, Inc. (now part of Fox), where he worked in software development, product management, user experience, sales and marketing. Mr. Haldeman received a bachelor’s degree in economics and English from Cornell College.

SmartRent is a smart home automation company that builds and deploys solutions for property owners, managers, renters and builders.


Designed as part of AFIRE’s membership program, AFIRE Virtual Events provide a recurring digital format for AFIRE members to stay connected beyond in-person meetings.

AFIRE Virtual Events are recorded and made available for members only.


Asmait Tewelde, Meeting Director
atewelde@afire.org+1 202 312 1404

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