Virtual Facility, provider of machine learning and automation management of alarms and maintenance work orders for the built world, announced it closed a $9 million seed round of funding from lead investor Camber Creek, with participation from existing investors Primary and Ubiquity Ventures.
The proliferation of building data from the Internet of Things, the retirement of experienced personnel, and adapting to a post-pandemic world has made the digital transformation of facilities management a high priority. Virtual Facility helps facilities managers and building engineers make data-driven decisions about alarms and maintenance work orders. Virtual Facility’s preliminary analysis shows that 47 percent of work done in response to alarms is unsuccessful. Alarm overload and nuisance alarms cause notifications about failing equipment and critical systems to be ignored.
Virtual Facility works with leading institutions, including Columbia University Irving Medical Center, NYU Langone Health, and Virginia Commonwealth University, among others. With this new infusion of capital, Virtual Facility will further expand its offering to empower current and future customers while exploring additional industry verticals where its alarms insights platform can make a meaningful impact.
“Virtual Facility is trusted by complex, mission-critical institutions, such as healthcare, pharmaceutical, research, and data center facilities, where the margin for error is very thin,” said Camber Creek investor Jean-Paul Bowgen. “We are excited to work with this team to bring the same operational efficiency to a broader market.”
Primary investor Brad Svrluga said, “This is a dream vertical SaaS play. Mark Prewett and Reed Berinato are experienced experts in this huge, complex market. Their success with top-tier institutions is evidence of the team’s ability to turn unique market insights into world-class products that drive desperately needed operational improvements. And in an environment where operational labor is retiring far faster than it can be replaced, Virtual Facility’s approach is a lifeline of efficiency.”
Virtual Facility’s cloud-based SaaS platform, Alarm Triage, brings together disparate alarm data from different building automation systems to create a single window into facility operations. The application of machine learning adds metadata to existing alarms so that they can be better understood and filtered and viewed through lenses that strip away irrelevant alarms. This creates actionable insights that eliminate nuisance alarms, lead to faster resolution times, and prioritize alarms for maintenance. Alarm Triage then connects to maintenance management systems to create, track, and correlate the effectiveness of unplanned work based on the re-occurrence of associated alarms.
Users can further increase their already lean workforce’s efficiency by embedding resolution procedures, adding notes to work orders, and viewing details within specific work orders to view an alarm’s resolution history. Customers have estimated these insights increased total labor productivity between 3x and 5x.
“We help critical facilities teams direct their attention to where it’s needed most,” said Mark Prewett, Virtual Facility’s co-founder and CEO. “Every day, we hear from our customers how Alarm Triage has expedited their ability to identify the root cause of issues and mitigate operational risk.”