We talked to Sjur Usken, Founder and CCO of ClevAir about efficient energy management, automated operations, and reduced costs and here is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Sjur Usken: We appreciate all those around us for taking precautions, which gives limited viruses in this region. Thus life can be as normal as possible.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded ClevAir.
Sjur Usken: We tested Smart home solutions back in 2009 and found the standardization of equipment was not ready. In late 2015 the Internet of Things was starting, and message formats were being standardized. At the same time, we observed a real estate industry working in a very labor-intensive way and traveling to each customer just to do small changes.
Our question: Could we automate this and provide a better solution, both in terms of indoor air quality while not wasting energy? And also less labor? And this is where we are today, seeing a great impact of ClevAir in buildings!
How does ClevAir innovate?
Sjur Usken: ClevAir is a smart building management solution that helps save energy and revitalize the indoor climate. While most PropTech products only deliver insights regarding air quality and temperature, ClevAir actually uses data from IoT sensors to optimize the HVAC in real-time. This can be done across the entire building portfolio, leading to massive reductions in energy consumption and CO2 emissions.
Additionally, ClevAir’s commercial-grade dashboards provide portfolio-wide insights ubiquitously, allowing building owners and managers the luxury of remote management and monitoring.
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Sjur Usken: We were already a remote-first company, thriving with a global organization. The biggest challenge in Covid times was very low energy prices, given less incentive for our customers to do something about their buildings.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Sjur Usken: Previously, we spent a lot of time traveling to each customer, even though we used video meetings for all our internal needs. Now the customer is comfortable with video meetings, and we waste less time traveling. But we do miss the good customer interaction over a good cup of coffee.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Sjur Usken: No, we were trying to do business as usual in the best possible way.
Your final thoughts?
Sjur Usken: The impact of a virus that killed so many people will sadly be minor if we do not treat our planet well. The climate impact will be significantly larger when millions of people need to move because of rising water levels and changes in weather patterns. The climate crisis will be the main challenge for this century!
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