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Kazim Aya Joins iBUILT as Chief Engineering, Automation Officer

Tue February 23, 2021 - National Edition

Kazim Aya
Kazim Aya

Kazim Aya, leading global expert in automation and supply chain, has joined iBUILT, the newly launched design-build-operate modular company, as chief engineering and automation officer.

Aya will lead the integration of standardized design, materials, engineering and automation of the construction and manufacturing process to support an entirely new way of building and assembling buildings.

Aya joins iBUILT with nearly 40 years of experience in supply chain management, manufacturing, automation technology and quality control systems from around the world and is well-equipped to manage the company's cutting-edge automation technology, according to the company.

In addition to overseeing iBUILT's operating model and technology, Aya will drive the implementation of new automation processes to increase the efficiency of using standardized components and repeatable processes to manufacture customizable buildings inside iBUILT's off-site facility in Pennsylvania to the specifications of the customer.

"I was instantly drawn to iBUILT because the company is on the front line of innovation in the construction industry," said Aya. "No one in the industry does robotic-automated manufacturing and implementing this technology into our unique design-build-operate process will completely change the way buildings are built and enable us to deliver better buildings. Our new way of building will be as transformative as when the assembly line was introduced to automobile manufacturing 100 years ago."

iBUILT launched in November 2020 with more than $150 million in signed deals and $600 million of new deals in negotiation, and since launching the company has increased its pipeline of new deals in negotiation to more than $1 billion.

iBUILT is the first modular developer to leverage automation at this scale. The company aims to redefine the construction value proposition by re-imagining the entire design, development and construction processes to create end products — buildings — that are more sustainable, meet the highest standards nationally and are "smarter" than those that result from a traditional development approach, according to the company.

To achieve approximately 20 percent lower construction cost and 50 percent faster construction, iBUILT uses modern technology, automation and controlled offsite manufacturing, and seamlessly integrates design, engineering, detailing, fabrication and onsite assembly.

"Kaz has reimagined conventional manufacturing processes through every step of his impressive career in value engineering and site management, and we are 100 percent aligned in our approach and commitment to the implementation of proven methodologies including Lean and Six Sigma," said Gonzalo Gonzalez, iBUILT's newly hired chief manufacturing officer and former senior director of manufacturing engineering at Tesla.

"As we continue to assemble our team of experts across a wide range of disciplines, Kaz will be central to making our aspirations a reality, driving the integration of design, engineering, automation and robotics into the building and construction industry and developing technologies to streamline and revolutionize our manufacturing process.

Before joining iBUILT, Aya was at the forefront of implementing cutting-edge automation technology and robotics into some of the world's largest industries, including automotive and hydroelectric power. During the course of his career, he has been involved in building the largest hydroelectric dam in Turkey, overseeing all robotics and high-tech automation facilities around the world, and developing critical design interventions including a robotic trim system, a vertical conveyor system, and an end-of-arm tool to increase manufacturing efficiency and save millions of dollars in labor and production costs.

Aya's extensive automation experience in a variety of industries brings a unique perspective to the building and construction industry. He has compared iBUILT's strategy for manufacturing buildings to that used to manufacture cars. Since Henry Ford's industry-transforming assembly line, car production has become increasingly seamless and cars have become more customizable, based on a standard model, to customer preference. Aya, together with the iBUILT leadership team, sees an opportunity to use best-in-class manufacturing incorporating automation technology to create a similar framework for building buildings, reinventing the process completely.

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