Belgian infrastructure major Besix has joined hands with Proximus, a key provider of communication and digital services, and i.Leco, a tech start-up specialising in buildings’ energy management, to create a smart building application platform combining their respective expertise in building, ICT and energy.
The new entity, aug∙e (short for Augmented Energy) reflects a purpose dedicated to energy transition and offers the most complete and future-proof solutions in the field of smart buildings.
The applications developed by aug∙e have been designed to be easy to use and available on both smartphones and computers. With the support of Proximus, Besix and i.Leco, it will continue to expand this ecosystem, particularly in three main areas: sustainability, comfort and maintenance.
The aug∙e solutions will be presented at the opening of the Belgian country pavilion during the Expo 2020 Dubai, which runs from October 1 to March 31, 2022 in the UAE.
According to Besix, the creation of aug∙e results from a twofold investment.
The first one is direct, through a capital contribution and the acquisition of stakes by Besix and Proximus in i.Leco, a European specialist in the innovative energy management of buildings and local energy communities, while the second one relies on the extensive integration of the legacy and existing technical and technological expertise of the trio; an illustration of this integration is the transfer of talent from Besix and Proximus to aug∙e.
Ultimately, the current i.Leco platform will naturally be absorbed into aug∙e, said the statement from Besix.
With aug∙e, the trio aims to bring into the maarket the state-of-the-art solutions in the field of smart buildings, which will contribute to making buildings a significant actor in the energy transition, it stated.
These solutions include the most innovative technologies to improve the energy performance and environmental impact of buildings, facilitate their long-term maintenance, and increase their users’ comfort, it added.
Besix General Manager (Europe) Jan Van Steirteghem said: "The concept of smart buildings consists of creating buildings that are both physical and digital: we create the digital twin of a building. These twins are connected and interact with each other in such a way that a change in the properties of one applies automatically to the other."
"In combining the respective expertise of Proximus, i.Leco and Besix in ICT, buildings energy management and construction and renovation, we have created aug∙e," stated Steirteghem.
"It is a platform that connects the physical building to a series of useful digital applications that allow building users and facility managers to optimise energy consumption and reduce carbon footprint, which will help combat climate change, to improve comfort in the workplace and to facilitate efficient operations," he added.
Proximus Chief Enterprise Market Officer Anne-Sophie Lotgering said: "As a climate-neutral company since 2016, Proximus is contributing actively to help its customers to use energy smarter and reduce their carbon footprint."
"The energy transition, and in particular the contribution of buildings to a more sustainable world, is at the heart of our initiative to create aug∙e," she observed.
"It will help us to bring to the market an unprecedented ecosystem of solutions that will set a new standard for the way we think about user experience in buildings and will actively contribute to reduce their ecological footprint. In these buildings, data will be truly at the service of tenants, users, employers, facility managers," she added.
According to her, aug∙e will allow developers and tenants to significantly increase the share of renewable energy in the energy consumption of assets.
With aug∙e, smart buildings can also learn from past experience and anticipate their own needs. By constantly analysing and adapting the use of electricity, smart buildings can proactively reduce energy consumption by up to a third and significantly reduce the ecological footprint of cities, she added.
Stefan Lodeweyckx, CEO of i.Leco and aug∙e, said: "The combination of the expertise of Besix, Proximus and i.Leco is unprecedented. With aug∙e, smart and truly intelligent buildings are not about the future: we build them today, seamlessly, with data science as their foundations."
"i.Leco and its teams, along with our new colleagues and expertise, will be absorbed over time into aug.e in order to offer our clients first-class services in a simple, autonomous and highly transparent way, as well as to promote a collaborative and co-creative approach with all our respective ecosystems," added Lodeweyckx.-TradeArabia News Service