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Domain announces new head of product as it looks to remain at the forefront of digital innovation

Australian real estate listing platform Domain has announced Asok Boopathy as its new director of product, stating that the appointment highlights it commitment to remaining at the forefront of digital innovation through a ‘startup-enterprise’ approach to development.

Boopathy, who has previously held senior product positions at Bigcommerce, PayPal, and Flight Path, has been tasked with furthering Domain’s product development and audience engagement as Domain, a Fairfax property, squares off against News Corp’s Realestate.com.au and other competitors.

“Asok’s experience within high-growth startups is aligned to our ‘startup-enterprise’ approach to technology and product development. While we are a big business, we have a startup mentality and set up. Asok’s experience in both big businesses and startups makes him a huge coup for Domain,” said Damon Pezaro, CPO at Domain.

The announcement of a new head of product follows a global eight-month search spanning across the US, Europe and Asia.

Boopathy has almost 20 years of global technology experience in building product teams, overseeing product organisation and strategy and leading product design in both startup and corporate B2B and B2C environments.

He will be responsible for Domain’s consumer-facing products, accelerating the team’s track record of bringing innovative, industry-first solutions and experiences to people on the property journey.

“Domain is a formidable player in the international property-tech space and has one of the best product teams in Australia. I am excited to be joining a brand that places such a high value on innovation. This is a big business with a startup mentality and set up, being led by big product minds, and I look forward to working with Damon and the team,” said Boopathy.

Boopathy’s appointment comes after Domain’s release of several major product innovations over the last years. The company last year integrated Google Now and Google Voice Commands into its app, and opened up property data to give valuations on every home in Australia with the Domain Home Price Guide. It also launched the ‘School Zone’ tool for parents looking to buy property within government catchment zones.

Fairfax’s Half Year financial results revealed Domain’s product team had delivered digital revenue growth of 37 percent, with online site visitors growing from 18.1 million in January 2015 to 39.9 million in November 2016.

As consumers come to expect seamless experiences within apps, Domain said it will be looking to integrate new features into its offering to create such experiences. The platform announced its new Domain Check In feature, which allows house hunters to check in at real estate inspections, sending their details to real estate agents who can then follow up with them.

Another big step up for the property market is the emerging commercialisation on VR technology. With Realestate.com.au being the most prominent company experimenting with VR, competitors like Domain need to innovate and think not only seamless experiences, but immersive experiences.

For Domain a new head of product will help them focus on transforming the consumer’s current property journey experiences. Domain believes that Boopathy ,along with other new team members, will be instrumental in driving innovation within the company forward.

Pezaro said, “While there are pockets of innovation here in Australia, the fast-paced environments we see in other markets is something we should look to replicate to ensure we stay at the forefront of digital innovation.”

Image: Damon Pezaro. Source: Supplied.





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