Our Q&A series is an opportunity for our Nordic team, headed by Sanna Walfridsson to discuss all things PropTech, Start-ups, and Career with different founders from across the region. Each week we will ask PropTech innovators burning questions and quiz them about their product, we hope you find it insightful and enjoy getting to know the founders as much as we have.
At Elementric they have developed a patented detector mat that covers a large surface area so it can detect a single drop of liquid. It contains an integrated circuit board to communicate to the cloud. The identified water leak will be communicated to the homeowner via the app, phone call or text. With multi-user support this allows another person such as a family member, a neighbour or a building administrator to be alerted.
In theory, everything is impossible until someone does it. For example, an autonomous drone helping to save the life of a cardiac arrest patient is an example of that, not possible in theory 5 years ago, but exists today. Startups within PropTech have in the last three years developed many services for the real estate market that it was not possible in theory to come up with. But thanks to the digitalization that takes place in society, there are now services that offer cost efficiency, time optimization and many other benefits for property owners, investors and tenants.
In Sweden, interest has risen in the last three years, but the real estate industry is slow adaptors. I think it’s a generational thing, but eventually real estate companies start to realize the value of new technology. Within the next 3 years, some of these start-ups will become new unicorns.
We offer a new product to a new market. We help achieve increased social, environmental, and economic sustainability by using our service to prevent water damage.
Not only does the real estate market have a huge problem with water damage, even insurance companies have a huge financial problem with it. Only in Sweden, insurance companies compensate for about 100,000 water damage each year at a cost of about SEK 10 billion. But there is a dark number of water damage that is never recorded with insurance companies due to high deductible and age write-down. A more realistic number of water damage is ca 200,000. 35% occurs in kitchen which is the least protected place from water leaks, but holds the most appliances. A total cost is more likely to be 20 billion SEK. The cost of water damage is significantly greater than the costs of fire damage or burglary in Sweden.
So it’s hard work to grow your own PropTech business, there’s a lot of work to do in informing customers about financial gain.
Over time, we have built up a lean tech team with talents who know our product inside and out. But in the future, we need to scale up our sales organization and establish a marketing team.
Our 2-year plan is to expand into the Nordic market. Most Nordic countries have an equal amount of water damage in kitchens as in Sweden. Nordic countries also have similar property culture, the same type of construction and age of real estate. We already have an established name in the Nordic PropTech scene as we have been nominated for the Nordic PropTech awards 2021, which I believe would help us making progress!
One third of the waste generated in Sweden comes from the construction and real estate sector. A sector that accounts for 20% of climate-impacting emissions. Only one water damage in one (1) kitchen results in an environmental impact of about 242.24 kg CO2.
Our predictions in the future of PropTech, is that based on the sustainability aspects, we will see services within circular economy. It will become more accepted with requirements for recycled or reuse of materials, and as a synergy to it comes the requirement to counteract water damage, in kitchens or in commercial properties eg. in connection with water-cooled ventilation, become more standard, especially in new production.
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