SAN DIEGO, March 24, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Virbela®, an immersive technology company that’s redefining the workplace for global businesses, today unveiled a newly designed virtual campus, more flexible avatar system, and native integration with Zoom. These innovations will give companies and their employees greater choice and control over how they work, connecting people regardless of physical location, while building a greater sense of community and culture.
“The enterprise metaverse is here, and Virbela is helping address common workplace challenges remote and hybrid organizations are facing today,” said Alex Howland, president and co-founder, Virbela. “In the next five to 10 years we envision millions of individuals and thousands of organizations operating in Virbela’s virtual worlds, and we’ve designed our platform from the ground up to grow with and help organizations improve the employee experience, operate more efficiently, and build strong community and culture.”
Virbela is empowering companies to build more human-centric workplaces that blend the physical and virtual working environments to seamlessly connect people around the world. Today’s product announcements include:
Newly designed virtual campus: A new generation of visual and functional updates have been designed to elevate the user experience, offering greater control and customization.
Advanced avatar system – Virbela set out to create the most diverse, inclusive and flexible avatar system available today.
Zoom integration – This is the first of many native integrations Virbela will have into the leading workplace collaboration tools available to enterprises today.
Some of the most innovative companies are already using Virbela to create experiences that foster collaboration and build community – including recruiting and new hire orientation, learning and development programs, company-wide meetings, team offsites, industry events and more.
“Virbela is one of eXp Realty’s biggest competitive advantages, enabling our cloud-based brokerage model that is growing exponentially with 20 markets around the world and more than 77,000 agents,” said Jason Gesing, CEO, eXp Realty. “Not only are we the only real estate company in the industry operating 100% out of a virtual world – from agent recruitment to C-suite, to board meetings and investor conferences – but we’ve been voted one of Glassdoor’s Best Places to Work for five consecutive years. Virbela gives us a sense of place to build community so we can come together, engage and grow.”
Virbela continues to push the boundaries of what is possible in the metaverse at scale:
These updates and more were revealed today at the company’s first-ever community summit, Hands In 2022, which also celebrates 10 years of Virbela building positive office experiences in the metaverse. The new virtual campus will be available for existing and new customers in the coming weeks. Additional product updates will begin rolling out in Q2, onwards.
Virbela is an immersive technology company that’s redefining the workplace for global businesses. Founded in 2012 by a team of behavioral psychologists, Virbela is building the next-generation of products for the Metaverse and VR to give organizations and people greater choice and control over how they work. With immersive virtual environments that are deeply social and collaborative, the world’s most innovative companies are turning to Virbela to create unique experiences that foster collaboration and build community.
Founder, CEO, eXp World Holdings
Since early 2002, Glenn Sanford has been actively involved in the online real estate space. In early 2007, Glenn launched BuyerTours Realty, LLC which, using a combination of web and traditional bricks and mortar, grew to three offices and into two states. After the drop off of the market in late 2008, Glenn and his executive team went back and rewrote the entire business model in recognition of the “perfect storm” of lower revenues, fixed or rising overhead costs, and a consumer with more information and access than ever before. eXp Realty, LLC was launched in October 2009 as the first truly cloud-based national real estate brokerage which meant giving up the traditional bricks and mortar environment and moving to a fully-immersive 3D virtual office environment where agents, brokers and staff collaborate across borders while learning and transacting business from anywhere in the world. In 2013, eXp Realty became a subsidiary of eXp Realty International Corp.
From 2004 to 2007, Glenn ran a large mega-agent team and consulted to Keller Williams International as a member of the Agent Technology Council in the areas of online client acquisition, client conversion and technology. Glenn also was a significant contributor to Keller Williams Internet Lead Generation Masterminds.
Prior to real estate, Glenn was active at the executive level with a number of technology-related companies. In 1998, he founded and served as President for eShippers.com, an online e-commerce and logistics company.
CFO, Chief Collaboration Officer, eXp World Holdings
As the Chief Financial & Collaboration Officer, Jeff works closely with Glenn across EXPI and the teams in Realty, finance, technology, marketing, legal, human resources, new business development/M&A, international markets, investor relations, and VirBELA.
He has more than 30 years of experience in global finance and operational leadership including executive positions at General Electric, CommerceHub, Pitney Bowes Software, and RM Sotheby’s Auctions.
CIO, eXp World Holdings
Shoeb Ansari serves as eXp Holding’s Chief Information Officer, as an accomplished software executive with an exceptional track record of building large scale product delivery organizations including product management, engineering, information technology, and information security for SaaS for private equity-owned and publicly traded enterprise software companies.
Chief Marketing Officer, eXp World Holdings
As Chief Marketing Officer, Courtney is responsible for amplifying the eXp World Holdings’ brands and overseeing all areas of marketing, including driving digital strategy for growth and enhancing eXp’s value proposition. A recognized thought leader in consumer lending, housing and digital transformation, Courtney was named a HousingWire Rising Star in 2016 and a Woman of Influence in 2019. Courtney has over two decades of marketing and innovation experience and has held various leadership roles at Roostify, CoreLogic and General Electric.
Chief Counsel and Corporate Secretary, eXp World Holdings
James Bramble is an authority in real estate law, a leader in the housing industry and advocate for acting with integrity. As eXp World Holdings Chief Legal Counsel, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, James oversees the company’s legal affairs, including corporate governance, litigation and compliance. James has over 20 years of international business experience and has transformed eXp’s legal and compliance functions to empower an agent-centric, globally-scaled organization. James champions eXtend a Hand, eXp’s charitable foundation and is an active member of the Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) and is a licensed real estate agent.
Chief Accounting Officer, eXp World Holdings
Kent is responsible for leading and developing the organization’s global accounting, finance practices and procedures. He also ensures the preparation and analysis of all financial reports comply with all applicable regulations. These vital financial functions enable eXp to continue its rapid growth trajectory and quickly expand its international footprint. He has decades of finance expertise in global finance, accounting and information technology functions in large, complex and geographically dispersed multi-billion-dollar international businesses.
President, eXp World Technologies
Alex founded VirBELA, a social virtual reality platform focused on education and team development with clients in various industries from government to retail. The VirBELA team developed eXp Realty’s cloud-based campus, called eXp World. eXp World Holdings, eXp Realty’s parent company, acquired VirBELA’s core group of products and services in November 2018.
As President of eXp World Technologies, an eXp World Holdings company, Alex leads the development of VirBELA’s products and services to expand the offering to agents, teams and others who could benefit from their own, always-available environments for collaboration.
In the development of VirBELA, Alex was awarded financial support from the Graduate Management Admissions Council, the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Health, the Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen Foundation and the American Psychological Association to support some of innovations and research.
Alex has a bachelors in organization psychology from Providence College and a doctorate in philosophy from Alliant International University, San Diego Scripps Ranch.
CEO, eXp Realty
Jason is Chief Executive Officer, eXp Realty, and a member of the Board of Directors for eXp World Holdings. He has been a critical part of eXp Realty since joining the company in March 2010 and has served in a number of capacities, including Chief Executive Officer, managing broker of multiple states, General Counsel and President. Currently, Jason supports the company’s larger enterprise by evaluating and developing complementary ventures outside of the more traditional residential real estate vertical.
President, U.S. Growth eXp Realty
As Co-President, Dave leads the U.S. growth and onboarding teams. Dave has more than 18 years of experience in the real estate industry. He was an owner/partner of multiple Keller Williams Realty market centers throughout the Mid-Atlantic and led one of the regions to No. 1 in the company for growth within three years. He also was one of the top recruiters at the company for nine years. At Long & Foster Companies, Dave developed professional and leadership training for sales managers and agents.
President, U.S. Brokerage Operations eXp Realty
Stacey has more than 19 years of real estate industry experience, and also is a professional speaker, trainer and certified continuing education instructor. Most recently, she was a designated broker and regional manager at a national real estate brokerage, overseeing more than 2,500 agents.
At eXp Realty, Stacey is responsible for eXp Realty U.S. brokerage operations, including compliance, risk management and state license laws.
President, eXp Global
Michael Valdes brings more than 25 years of expertise in global real estate and finance to eXp Realty. Most recently, he was Senior Vice President of Global Servicing for all Realogy Corporation brands, including Better Homes & Gardens, Century 21, Coldwell Banker, Corcoran, ERA and Sotheby’s International Realty. In his role, he oversaw the international servicing platform for all Realogy brands across more than 100 countries and opened more than 70 countries during his tenure.
EVP, People, eXp Realty
Mike is an integral part of driving the overall culture and organizational philosophy of eXp Realty. He has more than 20 years of experience strengthening the link between people, technology and corporate strategies for high-growth companies. His areas of expertise are in building scalable HR infrastructures with a focus on culture and organizational growth for rapidly expanding companies.
Prior to eXp Realty, Mike led Human Resources and Talent Acquisition at CloudCraze, a Salesforce company. He currently serves on the Chief Human Resources Officers (CHRO) committee for the Human Resources Management Association of Chicago (HRMAC), an association of strategic HR leaders in the Chicago area.
Dan has more than 10 years of experience managing public and private equity investments across a variety of industries. Currently, he is the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer of Amherst Ave Capital. Previously, he was the portfolio manager at Long Light Capital and a member of the investment teams at Ziff Brothers Investments and Madrone Capital Partners. Dan began his career with Bain & Co., where he advised Fortune 500 and private equity clients on M&A, growth and efficiency initiatives.
Dan holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, summa cum laude, from Claremont McKenna College and holds a Master of Business from the Harvard Business School, where he graduated with distinction.
After serving as Controller for Texas Instruments, in 1984 Gene left the corporate world for a career in Real Estate. He first sold for two small companies that were bought out by Coldwell Banker. Three years later he joined Re/Max, and soared to become one of the Top 20 Realtors in Texas. In 1989, Gene started Phoenix-based Realty Executives in Dallas, TX. In 1994 he sold this franchise and hired on with Keller Williams in Dallas as one of the first 10 agents at the Dallas Preston Road Market Center.
Gene has extensive management experience in residential real estate. Prior to joining eXp Realty, LLC., and his appointment to the eXp Board of Directors, he had served over the past two decades in various management capacities at Keller Williams. Among his many accomplishments during his tenure with Keller Williams began when Gene and his wife, Susan, became Team Leaders of the Dallas Preston Road Market Center in 1999 -2006 and grew that office from 100 to 533 agents! Both Gene and Susan were installed into the Keller Williams Team Leader Hall of Fame in 2009.
Gene was the top Team Leader for Keller Williams in recruiting for 4 of the last 11 years, including 2005, 2006, 2012, and 2013. Gene served with Keller Williams most recently out of the Austin NW Market Center as Team Leader, where he grew the office from 320 agents to 641 in 4 years! Prior to that Gene was Regional Director of Keller Williams Virginia from 2007-2009 where he was #1 Nationally in franchise sales for 2007 and 2008.
Gene and Susan currently reside in Austin, Texas, have 5 grown children and 4 grandchildren.
Fee Gentry currently is an eXp Realty agent in Texas, and co-chair and one of the original founders of ONE eXp, eXp Realty’s initiative for diversity and inclusion. She has more than 15 years of experience in the real estate industry, including being named a top local agent in her first year. Gentry also started several businesses in the rehab, fitness and sports training industries. She has a masters from Our Lady of Lake University in San Antonio where she focused on entrepreneurship and marketing.
Director | World-Class Speaker | Business/Real Estate Investor | Philanthropist
For over 25 years, Darren Jacklin has travelled 4 continents and personally trained and developed over 1 million people in over 50 countries.
He has mentored entrepreneurs and business owners on specific and measurable strategies. These strategies have then been implemented into businesses to increase income, transform obstacles into cash flow and turn passion into profits. Darren has an uncanny ability to increase wealth and success by uncovering hidden assets, overlooked opportunities and undervalued possibilities.
His talent has captured the attention of Tiger 21, Family Offices, Royal Family Offices, The Wall Street Journal, Yahoo Finance, NBC TV, CBS TV, CTV, CBC, Global TV, international radio stations, magazines and newspapers, movie producers, best-selling authors, CEO’s and business experts worldwide.
Darren Jacklin currently sits on paid international boards of directors and advisory boards of public and private companies internationally.
He has also personally trained 157 Fortune 500 companies such as Microsoft, AT&T, Black & Decker, Barclays Bank, as well as high school, college, and university students and lastly, professional athletes.
Passionate about making a difference in people’s lives, today, Darren also contributes time to his Global Philanthropy Foundation called Leaders Yielding to New Knowledge (LY2NK) to support the new LY2NK Leadership Academy sustainable schools in the slums of Liberia, West Africa and Uganda, East Africa.
For over 25 years Mr. Miles has held senior leadership positions in global financial services, financial technology and investment banking companies. His extensive investment banking background at bulge bracket, regional and boutique firms advising financial services companies on strategic and financial needs has crossed many disciplines. Mr. Miles’ transactional and advisory experience is complemented by leadership of public and private equity backed financial technology, specialty finance and software companies including Chairman and CEO at LIONMTS where he was nominated for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award, CEO at Syngence Corporation, COO of AtlasBanc Holdings Corp. and CEO of Advantage Funding / NAFCO Holdings which grew to in excess of $1 billion. Mr. Miles is currently Managing Partner at SCM Capital Group, a global strategic and financial advisory firm and Senior Managing Director at Tigress Financial Partners, a full service institutional broker dealer where is he is head of Investment Banking.
Most recently, Mr. Miles served as Senior Managing Director, Head of FIG and COO, Investment Banking at Cantor Fitzgerald & Co. Mr. Miles has held senior leadership roles at Oppenheimer & Co., D.A. Davidson and & Co., The First Boston Corporation (Credit Suisse) Meridian Capital and Greenwich Capital Markets. Mr. Miles has broad public, private and nonprofit board experience and has been active for many years in leadership roles with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. He presently serves on the boards of Kuity, Corp. and Posiba, Inc. as Vice Chairman and Chairman respectively. Mr. Miles holds a BBA from the University of Washington and holds FINRA licenses Series 7, 24, 63 and 79.