CrowdStreet
Investing
Austin, Texas

Overall Rank: 56
Category: Investing
Category Rank: 6

Profile

Making the markets work better for everyone.


During the Great Recession, their co-founders Tore Steen and Darren Powderly saw how many people were overly reliant on Wall Street for their investment opportunities. Realizing the importance of diversification outside of public equities, combined with the rise of a new investment vehicle known as equity crowdfunding, the two co-founded CrowdStreet in order to give individual investors better access to real estate, the 3rd-largest asset class in the U.S.


Visit www.crowdstreet.com


Key Products

A Simple Marketplace for Seamless Investing


Their Marketplace lets clients compare and review commercial real estate projects, so it’s easy to find the right direct investment opportunity for a portfolio. This allows clients to view a deal’s financial documents, register for a live webinar with the project developer, and submit an investment offer.


Key Executives

Tore Steen, Chief Executive Officer, Co-Founder


Tore Steen is CEO and co-founder of Crowdstreet, a commercial real estate crowdfunding company. A business leader in the internet and software industries, he has deep expertise in strategy, business development, sales and marketing for both publicly traded and private enterprises.


Darren Powderly, Co-Founder, VP Capital Markets


Darren Powderly is a Co-founder of CrowdStreet, one of the largest online private equity real estate investing platforms in the U.S.A. with $3.3B+ of equity invested into $25B+ of property value across 650+ deals since inception. Darren founded CrowdStreet in 2012 after identifying the need to radically improve people’s access to investment real estate through technology. Prior to founding CrowdStreet, Darren served as President of Compass Commercial, a full-service commercial real estate services company where he spent 12 years honing his skills across all aspects of the asset class. Prior to transitioning professions from technology to CRE, Darren and his wife spent seven months circumnavigating the globe in 2003, an adventure that taught him to cultivate a mindset of creativity, diversity, and abundance. Darren started his career during the 90’s tech boom in San Francisco at internet software company Oracle/ATG where he managed a national sales team. Darren launched his first profitable business at 19 years old in Boulder, CO where he graduated from the Leeds Business School at the University of Colorado, Boulder. In addition to business, Darren is passionate about giving back to his community and spending time with his family whether that be on the mountain or in the ocean.


Genni Combes, Chief Financial Officer


Genni Combes joins CrowdStreet as our new Chief Financial Officer. Over the past 15+ years, Genni has served as a finance and operations executive at both public and private companies with a focus on leading tech firms through growth stages from startup to IPO. She started her career on Wall Street, having served as an equity analyst covering the e-commerce, FinTech, and broader tech sectors on both the buy and sell side. During that time, she acted as underwriting analyst in over 20 equity transactions for companies such as Intuit, E*Trade, E-Loan, Amazon.com, and Pixar. She most recently served as the CFO at ApplePie Capital Prior to that, Genni held senior executive roles at Sungevity and ZipRealty, in addition to serving as a Managing Director at JP Morgan H&Q. Combes holds a BA in Economics with highest honors from the University of California, Santa Cruz.


Ian Formigle, Chief Investment Officer


Ian is a real estate professional and serial entrepreneur with over 25 years of experience in real estate private equity, equity options trading and start-ups. Ian is Chief Investment Officer at CrowdStreet, overseeing its marketplace, an online commercial real estate investment platform that has completed over 650 offerings totaling over $25 billion of commercial real estate. As one of the commercial real estate industry’s foremost thought leaders, Ian is the author of “The Comprehensive Guide to Commercial Real Estate Investing”, he is a contributing author at Forbes.com, and he serves as the most frequently featured commercial real estate expert guest for The Investor’s Podcast.


Prior to joining CrowdStreet, Ian was VP of Business Development for ScanlanKemperBard Companies, where he managed the firm’s alternative investment platform and served as a senior acquisitions officer. Previously, Ian cofounded and served as CEO of Clarus Property Ventures, a regional real estate private equity firm that focused on multifamily acquisitions. Ian began his career as an equity options market maker and member of the Pacific Exchange.


Kristen Howell, General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer


Kristen Howell joins CrowdStreet as our General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer. Kristen brings more than 20 years of legal experience in FinTech, corporate securities, and financial services. Prior to joining CrowdStreet, Kristen was a partner at Am Law 100 law firm Fox Rothschild, LLP, where she led the firm’s national investment funds practice. Kristen previously served as General Counsel for a registered investment adviser with $19B in assets under management and six publicly traded mutual funds. Kristen has been featured on NPR – Marketplace Tech and InsideCounsel, been quoted in Law 360 and other publications, and has spoken widely on FinTech, investments and crowdfunding. Kristen holds a BS in Political Science from Texas Christian University and a JD from The University of Colorado School of Law in Boulder.


Spending her career with capital markets, technology and law, Kristen brings a unique perspective to CrowdStreet. “I am joining CrowdStreet at a time when alternative investing platforms are in the spotlight and CrowdStreet in particular has proven that its marketplace is becoming the de facto standard for sponsors looking to raise capital and for investors who are interested in participating in real estate investing.”


Scott Mackley, President, Marketplace Business


Scott Mackley is the President of the Marketplace Business of CrowdStreet. He previously worked at QuinStreet as an Executive Vice President. Scott Mackley attended Washington and Lee University.


Corporate Responsibility

The three pillars of ESG consider the impact of a business on environmental sustainability, social issues, and fair corporate governance practices to more holistically evaluate long-term risk and opportunities. This means they must rethink how commercial real estate exists within the built environment, how and by whom it is operated, and the long-term impact of their business operations.


CrowdStreet recognizes that the time has come for the commercial real estate industry to cease being a part of the problem regarding ESG issues and strive to become a part of the solution. In 2021, they set a goal of having 15% of all approved Marketplace deals satisfying one or more CrowdStreet ESG components, which are usually listed out in the business plan of the offering. These include (but are not limited to) the following checkmarks:


1. Sponsorship diversity, equity and, inclusion – the founder or principal is a member of a minority group


2. Certified sustainable building or green asset – e.g., LEED or WELL Certification


3. Positive social impact–low income housing, historical tax credit, or community engagement


4. Governance–sponsor is, or partnering with a B-corporation (typically 30% or more of rent roll)


Although this is just the beginning of their ESG revolution, they are happy to say they exceeded their goal, with 16.7%* of their total approved deals meeting these criteria. They’re reaffirming their commitment and responsibility and have raised the bar in 2022 to a goal of 20%.


Customer Insights

“CrowdStreet was the first site that I was aware of to offer smaller investors access to quality real estate deals from vetted sponsors. Not only did CrowdStreet allow me to diversify my overall portfolio by adding real estate, I further diversified by adding different types of real estate. Being on CrowdStreet has also made me a much more confident and knowledgeable real estate investor. By listening to the sponsor-whether I become an investor or not–I am learning from the experts as to how they look at a deal, evaluate a deal, and understand how different asset classes work. You learn a lot just by listening and realize real estate isn’t that complicated. It’s all about common sense and thinking things through.” – Robert J.


 


“Real estate is an accessible, reliable way to create passive income and be prepared for unexpected changes in the economy.” – Karlin Conklin, Principal & Executive Vice President, Investors Management Group, in Kiplinger


 


“Until CrowdStreet, I didn’t have access to these types of deals, this deal flow, and the size. I am not a large corporation. I don’t have the resources of Wall Street. So I wasn’t given the opportunity to invest. CrowdStreet offered me access in a way that just didn’t exist before.” – Jim M., Repeat CrowdStreet Marketplace Investor


 


“Raising capital with CrowdStreet is like having a second set of underwriters. They sit down with us to review deals and raise questions that we may not have thought of. Having a fresh view of our project really helps us bring a more comprehensive project to the Marketplace.” – Josh Krsnak, President and CEO, Hempel Real Estate


 


“The speed in which CrowdStreet’s investors committed to the funding target was pretty amazing, as we hit the goal of over $25 million in offers in just a few hours. It certainly feels like crowdfunding has matured to the point where it needs to be treated as a serious channel of investment.” – James R. Heistand, CEO, Parkway Acquisitions


 


“I’ve been in real estate for 20 years, and I specifically remember that day…feeling like this is an enormous game-changing moment, both for our company and for real estate in general, that we had cracked the code for what had been a slow and inefficient process.” – Sean Lyons, Founding Partner, Jackson Dearborn Partners


 


“There was no feasible way we could have scaled our investor base 10x in 12 months if it hadn’t been for a platform like CrowdStreet.” – Tom Carroll, Managing Partner, Watermark Partners Real Estate


 


“As we grow as a company we have more and more investors, but we have an ever-increasing need for more capital as well. Partnering with CrowdStreet allows us to chase bigger deals and do more business. CrowdStreet helps us scale to larger and more productive deals that we weren’t able to do before.” – Stephen Cassidy, President, Denholtz Properties


 


“With CrowdStreet, I went from spending 25% of my time managing investors to 1%.” – Joe Ollis, Founder/COO, SMARTCAP


Company Insights

“One thing I appreciate about CrowdStreet is that it’s filled with entrepreneurs and the company values individuals who ask ‘why’ and work creatively to improve the status quo. I have the opportunity to continually redefine my job description in order to help grow a disruptive and equitable company, as well as develop my own skills. The dogs are great too!” -Reed L., Customer Care Team Lead


 


“Every day I look forward to coming in to work! At CrowdStreet I get to be a part of a diverse team that is dedicated and passionate about transforming the world of real estate investment.” – Anna-Marie A., Director of Investments


 


“CrowdStreet is hands-down the best team I’ve ever been on! There’s so much passion and camaraderie, and knowing the company values everyone makes us all want to push that much harder.” – Mikki, Software Engineer


 


“Working at CrowdStreet provides me with a unique perspective on the world of commercial real estate, which we are helping transform on a daily basis. I enjoy and appreciate being able to work alongside a diverse group of colleagues from various backgrounds-all together, we’re constantly working towards creating something new and special!” – Julius V., Real Estate Investment Analyst


 


“I love coming to work each day and collaborating with a smart team who works extra hard to do the right thing. They also make me smile and laugh, which always makes the day go by a lot smoother. It’s great being at the forefront of a changing industry and I appreciate working with entrepreneurs and collaborating with growth oriented teams.” – Elisa C., Managing Director, Capital Markets


 


“CrowdStreet is such an energizing place to work because it’s chock full of bright, fascinating people with incredibly diverse backgrounds and interests. In the same meeting, you can have an exec who raises chickens, a bassist, an owner of a hot sauce company, and a race car driver. I appreciate that no two days are ever the same and that CrowdStreet, in particular, hires for character and vibrancy.” – Britt S., Customer Success Manager