Northzone backs ‘genius’ IoT startup

Infogrid, the two-year-old artificial intelligence technology company that automates facilities management and claims to make any building smart, has raised $15.5m Series A funding from a combination of UK and US investors.

The round was led by Nordic VC, Northzone, an early stage investor in Spotify among other techs, with participation from JLL Spark, Concrete VC, The Venture Collective, Jigsaw VC, a leading global real estate investment group, and a large international asset owner.

The funding will be used to accelerate Infogrid’s growth that has already enhanced facilities management for the world’s largest FM providers, many S&P 500 and FTSE 100 companies, including global banks, supermarkets, restaurant chains, and the NHS. Crucially, the funding will help Infogrid achieve its mission to address the world’s climate crisis by enabling businesses to reduce the environmental and social cost of their buildings while simultaneously benefitting their bottom line and asset values.

Infogrid’s breakthrough platform delivers on the promise of the Internet of Things, making smart buildings simple, affordable, and scalable. It combines the best real-time IoT sensors available on the market with proprietary AI analysis to translate data into meaningful insight. The output is then used to revolutionise the way we understand and operate buildings.

Managers can make decisions to improve their ESG score and drive energy efficiency, providing major advances to reduce the CO2 output of buildings, which account for 39% of global emissions. For example, for a leading global bank, Infogrid’s system eliminates three metric tons of carbon emissions and thousands of liters of water wastage per building, annually – as well as reducing the time it takes to undertake compliance checks by 81%.

Infogrid has also been essential in enabling organisations to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic. Covid-19 has increased demand for organisations to remotely manage their buildings, gain insights into the volume and movement of people in spaces, and use data to ensure clean and safe environments to comply with social distancing requirements for employees returning to work.

Infogrid can measure everything from the number of people in a room, to air quality and virus risk indicators for the improved wellbeing of employees and customers, to even helping reduce the risk of legionnaires disease in water pipes by automating compliance checks.

William Cowell de Gruchy, founder and CEO of Infogrid, said: “Until now, the lack of viable and scalable technology has meant that facilities management is one of the last industries to be enhanced by digitisation, despite covering the world’s largest asset class. Infogrid’s end-to-end smart building system finally arms organisations with insight to take control and take action. This new era of insight and automation will bring about a positive impact on the efficiencies of businesses, the wellbeing of employees, and the environmental footprint of buildings.

“The backing of Northzone and other like-minded investors in this oversubscribed funding round is a vindication of our technology and will enable us to accelerate our growth as we lead real estate owners and the facility management industry in combating the climate crisis and environmental damage on a global scale. Helping in that fight is both a company and personal passion.”

Jeppe Zink, partner at Northzone, said: “With the world undergoing the largest wave of urban growth in history, the built environment already generates 39% of annual global carbon emissions. We were instantly drawn to Infogrid for its ability to future-proof buildings in the long-term, through smart sensors and real-time data that has a major impact on limiting wasted energy as well as helping businesses cut down on manual maintenance efforts.

“But Infogrid’s real genius lies in their device-agnostic, AI-driven approach to making IoT products truly scalable through lowering costs and complexity, which isn’t something we’ve ever seen elsewhere. Coupled with a skilled founding team, we believe Infogrid will become the defining company of its category.”

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