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Why owning your data is important: Prabhu Ramachandran, CEO & Co-Founder of Facilio

Facilio’s CEO Prabhu Ramachandran talks about the important trends & opportunities to watch out for in 2023, what’s driving innovation in property operations and why CRE owners must start owning their CaFM solutions.

1. How has the UAE proptech market evolved over the last few years? What are the trends driving innovation?

Current trends and evolving consumer behavior indicate that there are huge opportunities for proptech firms that offer real value via operational efficiencies, cost optimization, superior tenant/occupant experiences, and sustainability (energy management). These are the key drivers shaping the way proptech is being delivered and adopted.

Traditionally, commercial real estate owners have outsourced entire facility management operations and tech to external vendors, with little control and visibility into how their portfolios are performing. We see the tide changing. Building owners are starting to make direct investments in the tech platforms and looking to own their CaFM, thus taking back control of their data with a view on long term efficiencies. This gives them access to generational data to be able to make data-informed decisions.

Owner-driven portfolio operations are going to find more thrust in the coming months, and will potentially open up more avenues for innovation.

2. What are the challenges facing the market?

Traditional FM service providers are holding on to the in-efficacies of legacy systems, cannibalizing new-age innovation in the space. What is needed is a mindset shift among commercial portfolio owners, and more thrust on innovation.

The general property ops landscape is cluttered with disparate systems and point solutions and a clear visibility into the ROI is lacking for owners. Technology and digitization are tools to achieve an optimum environment for people and should be carefully selected and implemented to raise the industry standard as well as improve bottom-line efficiency for the portfolio.

3. What has you most excited about Proptech in 2023?

I believe ‘consolidate and conserve’ will be the two biggest themes that will define 2023. Proptech, specifically operations technology, will be a strategic anchor for enterprises to thrive in tough economies.

We can already see consolidation happening within the property ops space, and this will continue next year as well. This is evidence of a broader demand for technology products that unifies the power of building automation software and enterprise O&M applications in a single platform, trying to gain more value out of less.

CRE owners are also seeing increasing value in making the transition from legacy CMMS to modern, connected CMMS, as they value the need to see systems, processes, and people through a single unified lens.

4. What have been your biggest achievements in the last year?

We raised our series B fund for $35 million – this investment is being used to extend our market leadership, expand sales and marketing, and enable more companies to reach success through a predictive, connected model of real estate operations.

We doubled our headcount in the last one year, and are currently at 200 employees with a globally distributed workforce across 4 continents. We achieved 400% revenue growth in the past 12 months.

We acquired large enterprise customers in London, Dubai, Australia, New York and other regions, and we now manage 10,000+ buildings globally.

We rolled out a scalable, AI-driven Connected Retail solution to help retail portfolios remotely monitor and control systems, deploy optimization strategies at scale, and improve energy savings & asset performance.

Most recently, Facilio became one of the first solution providers worldwide to be accredited by WiredScore, the company which provides internationally recognized digital connectivity and smart building rating systems for real estate. Besides, we are happy to have played a role in helping two of our customers British Land and Brookfield achieve Platinum SmartScore Certification for 100 Liverpool Street located in London and ICD Brookfield Place located in Dubai respectively.

5. What are your plans for next year?

We’ve recently opened a new HQ that’s spread across 40,000 sq ft. We will continue to make strategic hires across the marketing, product and engineering functions, and also strengthen our enterprise sales teams in the Middle East, US, UK, Europe & Australian markets. We also plan to revive our annual roadshow ‘Future Proof’ in 2023 which will feature a series of summits in four cities – Dubai, London, New York & Australia. The all-day summits will bring together progressive leaders in the CRE space sharing real & actionable insights into how buildings can be made energy efficient & deliver a first-class workplace experience.