Act. Now. Welcome to the future of building automation.

1. What does DABBEL stand for?

Climate change concerns us all. We founded our company in 2018. Our mission is to develop the most scalable, cost-efficient, and sustainable software-based building automation. The goal: to reduce CO2 emissions in commercial buildings worldwide as quickly as possible. In addition to improved energy efficiency, the well-being of building occupants will be enhanced, and costs reduced at the same time.

DABBY plays a decisive role in this. With our software add-on, the manual control of the existing building management system is replaced by artificial intelligence. This artificial intelligence – DABBY – controls the energy systems autonomously and in real time. Without any hardware or upfront costs, DABBY can save up to 40 % of the energy consumption of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems in commercial buildings.

In doing so, DABBY does the same as a human facility manager, with the difference that more than 20,000 variables are considered in real time. For example, these include current and future weather conditions as well as usage habits. The result is improved performance that ensures a healthy indoor environment and reduces excessive energy consumption and CO2 emissions.

2. What differentiates DABBEL from the competition?

Our business model is based on trust and efficiency. Our software add-on can be installed remotely with no upfront costs, is up and running in less than a week and can be cancelled monthly. The short implementation time, combined with the highest technological standards and a savings potential of up to 40 %, means that the investment in our software pays off within the first month. In addition, customers are informed monthly about the CO2 emissions saved.

Furthermore, installation and maintenance costs of additional hardware in the buildings are completely eliminated, as the software add-on is a cloud-based solution that works completely remotely. The only requirements on the part of the customer are an internet connection, access to the building’s main communication protocol and a VPN connection.

Once implemented, our software works without any further effort on the part of the client. The artificial intelligence used – DABBY – is self-learning and adapts independently to the thermodynamics of the building, as well as to the behaviour of the people in the building. Software updates take place centrally.

The biggest hurdle in using solutions to increase the energy efficiency of commercial buildings lies in high upfront investments, a long implementation phase, long contractual commitments, and little planning certainty. This is exactly where we come in.

3. In which strategic direction should the company develop?

Think global, act local – in the long term, our software shall be used worldwide. Now, we are mainly represented in the DACH region and in Great Britain. In addition, we already have customers in the USA, Australia, New Zealand, and China. We do not set ourselves any limits, as the reduction of CO2 emissions in the building sector benefits us all.

Our technology is already a win-win-win situation for our customers. With our software, we enable them to save money, which they in turn can use wisely, and we help them to reduce their environmental footprint. The remote implementation process makes it easy to optimise not only individual buildings but also a complete (portfolio) of buildings anywhere in the world, starting with the properties that already have a building management system (BMS).

What about the rest of the buildings? For maximum impact, we also need to talk about the commercial buildings that don’t have BMS or that are limited in their use of the potential of technology already in place. To put this into perspective, 70 % of the variables a building generates are not recognised even by building control systems. A lot of potential is wasted here, as the basis for optimisation in this area already exists. But the data is not available. We talk to building owners, we support them in meeting their needs (e. g. additional sensors, in-depth improvements, building management installations) by connecting them with our partners. Once the demand is met, we can again use our software to visualise all the variables and save up to 40 % of energy consumption with each additional building connected.  In short, we open the ecosystem. We are showing what is possible in building optimisation and what a huge impact we can have on climate change as a result.

We aim to predict future hubs of building behaviour as well as to use the analysed data to predict the energy demand of an entire building stock, which will be invaluable for negotiations with energy suppliers.

4. Why is such a system not already standard?

Two factors come into play here: climate change and energy prices. Until a few years ago, these were not big issues. Energy was extraordinarily cheap and climate change was perceived as a rather long-term problem. That perception has changed significantly. We have realised that we do not have much time left in terms of climate change. The time to act is now.

Yet over the past decades, building automation has not evolved significantly. It is true that nowadays not everything is controlled manually (e. g. turning the heating on and off), but in larger blocks, perhaps even via a building management system. But, if something works and the external circumstances do not change dramatically, as they do now, there is no need to change anything in the existing systems. There are a few providers on the market whose systems are used to manage buildings worldwide and who are also profitable with their technology.  But their own business model makes it impossible for them to react flexible to changes. We have recognised this and are optimising existing solutions that work but are not efficient enough to save CO2 emissions now.

5. How many customers does DABBEL have?

We don’t think in terms of the number of our customers, but in square metres managed by our software. At the beginning of 2021, we have 70,000 square metres under management. Only twelve months later, it’s just under one million square metres. By the end of 2022, we want to manage five million square metres. Most of the square metres are in properties in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, France, and the UK.

With the help of our remote implementation process, we can optimise an unlimited number of buildings anywhere in the world. That is why we are currently developing a distribution model with our clients to control all existing buildings with our software. This will increase the square metres managed without increasing the customer base.

6. How many employees does Dabbel have?

Now we are 20 employees. Half of us are engineers and software developers. The other half takes care of marketing and sales. In 2022, the number of permanent employees is expected to increase to about 35-40.