Singapore-based air sensor startup uHoo has raised a 7-figure in a bridge round led by Wavemaker Partners with co-investment from Seeds Capital, a real estate developer, and angel investors. uHoo’s seed investor East Ventures also participated in the round.
The startup will use the newly-raised funding for business development to drive growth and to also develop new technology.
Founded in 2014, uHoo’s goal is to help companies and individuals track and improve the air quality in their offices and homes using valuable data insights, allowing them to alleviate health problems in the long run.
Its air sensor, the size of a coffee mug, detects harmful traces of toxins in the air — such as nitrogen dioxide — and sends that information to the uHoo mobile app. Once the air quality hits unhealthy levels, the app sends out notifications and alerts, along with tips and tricks on how to improve the situation
Users can use the app to integrate IFTTT and Amazon Alexa as well as customise alert thresholds. In the near future, it plans to roll out Google home, Nest and Apple Homekit integrations.
uHoo also has a web dashboard and user management system for enterprise customers and also provides them with APIs to integrate with building management systems to automate buildings. Managing air quality in offices may seem trivial, but a report by the National Institutes of Health found that spending US$40 per person per year to improve air quality yielded a US$6,500 in productivity gain and reduced illnesses for each person.
“Air quality is crucial to our health, well-being, and productivity but it is often overlooked. uHoo is attempting to provide the best air quality management solution, and it’s amazing how, by simply providing better data, property managers can improve air quality in buildings resulting in 95 per cent decrease in environment related complaints and 50 per cent increase in productivity,” said Paul Santos, Managing Partner at Wavemaker, in an official press statement.
Currently, uHoo is already deployed in offices, hospitals, schools and hotels and in multiple industries across more than 10 countries, including clients such as Ascendas, Schiphol airport, Linde, Ricola, Gammon and the government of the Netherlands, among others. , uHoo has partnered with real estate services firm JLL.
Although, uHoo is a Singapore-based company, most of its enterprise clients are in Europe — where it has an office — while its residential customers are mostly in the USA and Canada. uHoo Co-founder Dustin Jefferson Onghanseng attributed the trend to the “adoption of new technology among consumers” being much faster in the USA and Canada, while Europe offered a more favourable B2B market for its product.
But there are takers in Southeast Asia and in Singapore. OngHanseng said that approximately 10 enterprise clients are in Southeast Asia, where 3 are in Singapore; one of these 3 is District6 in Odeon Towers.
“The air quality sensors were a boon to operational efficiency. We are now able to map the healthier rooms from the less healthy ones, and subsequently put measures in place to improve air quality. The general well-being of my members is directly impacted in a positive way.” said Jethro Quek, Founder and Managing Director of District6.
uHoo is looking to raise its Series A in the fourth quarter of next year. It plans to will use the funding to further scale the business and develop machine learning technology to better analyse air quality data.
Besides its seed and bridge round, uHoo has also received funding from two Indiegogo campaigns, one in 2014 and the other in 2016.
Image Credit: uHoo