Compass, the leading real estate firm, recently went public. The IPO transformed two of its founders, Robert Refkin and Orie Elon, into very wealthy men. The firm plays two important roles, but Allen is what we are talking about today.
41-year-old Ori Allon has already sold two tech companies to the co-founding compass. As of this writing, Orient has a $ 405 million stake in the company, yet there are no direct reports. In contrast, Refkin has eight C-suite officers who report to him.
Allon is the technical co-founder of Compass. He is an engineer by trade and an entrepreneur who comes from Israel. When he was a 26-year-old Ph.D. A student at the University of New South Wales, Australia, he wrote the algorithm for the Origin search engine. Their innovation was to index the web so that the search result was relevant even if the keywords were not present on the page.
Bill Gates was a fan of Orion. There was a bidding war between Yahoo, Microsoft and Google for the company. Google won that bid battle and used Allen’s algorithm to create a clever search engine. Orion is now an integral part of Google’s search. Elon worked at Google for four years.
Elon left Google to start the Julapan company, which looked at how people shared information on social media sites. A year after Julapan was founded, Twitter acquired the company and made Allen the director of its engineering office in New York City.
For his next company, Elon wanted to disrupt an analogue industry, so he and Ruffkin founded Compass, a residential real estate firm. The firm has grown to control 4% market share of US domestic sales by dollar volume between 2019 and 2020. The firm has 19,000 agents who stay away from rival real estate firms with high salaries and stock options.
Elon has little role in the compass now that it is a publicly traded entity, a natural progression for this serial entrepreneur. When he takes leave, he will do so with a good breeze for his years with Compass. Allon holds a 5.5% stake in the outstanding AA shares of Compass. His exit appears to have been planned and underway, with Refkin not mentioning Elon in the letter to potential investors and his name appeared just five times in the IPO prospectus.
It will be interesting to see what Orie Elon does next!