XL Innovate Backs Construction Risk Management Platform Pillar

September 5, 2017

Pillar Technologies, which uses sensors to capture and distribute risk data on construction sites in real time, has secured $2.75 million in seed funding from XL Innovate, Hyperplane VC and Techstars Ventures.

Pillar said the funding will enable it to scale the manufacturing of its sensors and expand the team building its software platform for construction companies and contractors.

As part of the financing round, Martha Notaras, a partner at XL Innovate, will join the Pillar board of directors.

Pillar Technologies deploys industrial-grade sensors across construction sites to address high-value risks during and after construction by actively monitoring key environmental factors, such as temperature, pressure, humidity, smoke and dust.

Pillar hopes to convince general contractors and insurers to use its platform to monitor sites, forecast failures, and be alerted to costly hazards such as water leaks, freezes, fires and mold outbreaks.

Pillar sees the sensor platform as a way to protect sites from damage and reduce insurance claims. In addition, in the event of a destructive event, Pillar provides real-time information to first responders.

Tech Targets Construction Risk Management

“Construction sites continue to be a dangerous place. From fires to fumes, the ability to predict occurrences that may harm workers, or the site itself, can serve as a powerful tool to save both lives and livelihoods. At Pillar, we’ve refined the definition of construction technology, offering a hardware and software experience that seamlessly does exactly that – opening the door to preventive action that dramatically lessens the probability and severity of such events,” said Alex Schwarzkopf, co-founder and CEO of Pillar Technologies.

Pillar said it recently finished its pilot program with national construction companies and is now making the technology commercially available to early adopters.

“By bringing industrial-grade sensors to construction sites, Pillar can offer more accurate risk management to general contractors and potential policy optimization to insurance providers to better protect sites from damage,” said XL Innovate’s Notaras. “Gathering and analyzing key environmental data can help predict and prevent major issues while allowing insurers and their clients to reduce losses over the long run.”

Notaras has also backed Notion, an Internet of Things-related startup focused on a low-cost remote smart home sensor for home security. She has also led XL Innovate’s investments in Lemonade and Cape Analytics among other insurtech startups.

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