Founded in March 2017 by former Zoho Executives Prabhu Ramachandra, Rajavel Subramanian and Yogendra Babu, the firm runs facilities on autopilot from maintenance to sustainability; meaning that it manages to build operations in real time across a collection of buildings through an integrated facilities management software that makes use of IoT and machine learning. They combine the flexibility facility managers that technicians want with the receptiveness and experience occupants need. By turning an agglomeration of data from different streams into one dashboard, they are able to draw useful interpretations from the data.
“Our product is for companies that own and operate multiple buildings. 20-25% of construction cost goes towards facilities ranging from fire-fighting equipment to heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC). Today, the building owner is not on the driving seat. While hardware has been developed, the influence of software on buildings is yet to be seen in a big way,” said Ramachandran.
“We have been looking at the IoT space for a while. Hardware focussed startups have limitations because they are capital intensive and take time to scale. Facilio’s software can deliver value to the customer quickly and works with the existing hardware. The team is solving a global problem and the timing is right given the emphasis towards green buildings and sustainability,” said Shekhar Kirani, partner, Accel Partners.
A report from Transparency Market Research states that the market growth for facilities management worldwide stands at a CAGR of 13.6%, reaching $ 1,887 billion by 2024. Many individual firms do offer IoT-based solutions for various facilities such as energy management or HVAC. But Facilio is trying to develop an integrated platform intended to provide a building owner with an excellent overview of systems across buildings. Facilio is now competing with the likes of giants IBM, Microsoft and SAP for a share of this market.
“Energy management is typically a post facto exercise. With IoT and the data we source from buildings, we hope to offer actionable intelligence and drive sustainability, which is important not just for the building owner but every stakeholder in the building from the tenant to the ground staff and occupant,” said Ramachandran.
The startup is conducting trials across 10 buildings and is currently negotiating with companies in the USA and the Middle East. Founder Ramachandran is very optimistic about the service the recently born startup offer, “No customer to date has refused to try our product. That gives you a sense of how relevant the offering is today,” he said.