An Interview with Smart Building Event Co-Chair Josh Bradshaw
Monique Hodgkinson, VLAB Marketing Co-Chair, recently caught up with Josh Bradshaw, Co-chair for the VLAB Smart Building event on Feb 16, 2016, to talk about the event.
Monique: First, some background. How long have you been involved with VLAB?
Josh: The first VLAB event I attended was the January 2014 Young Entrepreneurs event. The story told by Marcus Weller from Skulley amazed me. I heard about the next month’s event that evening, attended it and then became a VLAB volunteer for an event. Since then I’ve volunteered for several teams, and this is my third time as an event co-chair.
Monique: Why smart buildings for the VLAB stage?
Josh: Tricky question, because from the outside looking in buildings just aren’t that interesting, and it was a tough sell. We live, work, and experience buildings every day and take it for granted that they are there, the lights are on, and the temperature is right. What I see, though, is that there is a huge opportunity to leverage technology to remove the pain points and some of the costs associated with owning, managing and operating a building.
Monique: Why was it a tough sell?
Josh: It’s because initially when I sat down with Tyler Kemp, my co-chair, and scouted the topic we weren’t focused on the right thing for the VLAB audience. This is an important thing to learn while preparing a VLAB event. We learned that while the technology is awesome, what is really interesting is that it can be in the hands of each of us that occupy a building. That’s never been done before and it’s disruptive.
Monique: How so?
Josh: Well, as luck would have it we found Building Robotics and they are literally putting smart building technology in the hands of everybody who works in a building. Anyone who has worked in a building has been too hot, too cold or has had to listen to people complain about it being too hot or too cold. Building Robotics provides a solution where people can request hot or cool air, either online or in an app. It is simple and genius.
Monique: But wouldn’t this make the heating or cooling bill go up?
Josh: Well, not according to Andrew, the Building Robotics CEO, and he’ll share more about that at the event, but the thing is there is energy and money saved.
Monique: Money saved?
Josh: Yes. And we’re talking real money here, and it goes beyond the energy savings. That is what is really exciting about this topic. Smart building IoT solutions can generate more immediate value than similar solutions for the smart home because of operations costs.
Monique: IoT for smart buildings is more valuable than smart homes?
Josh: Absolutely! When I have smart lights at home they can be cool and maybe save me some energy and provide some security, and when one burns out I just go and change it. But a building full of smart lights can save on energy, have security AND save money because when a regular light bulb goes out in a building someone has to be paid to report, track, test and replace it. That’s just one example of operations costs. And there’s a whole lot more applications than just burnt out light bulbs, which is why investors are interested in this space.
Monique: Thanks for sharing, Josh, it sounds like it will be a great event.
Josh: No problem, happy to share and help the marketing team get the word out about the event.
For more information on the Smart Building event, visit https://vlab.org/events/