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Tech Company Brings New Insight to Construction Industry

Integrated design and construction platform will accelerate innovation in the industry.

Mon April 17, 2017 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide


Brad Knight, CEO of Katerra.
Brad Knight, CEO of Katerra.

Katerra, a technology company redefining the construction industry, recently revealed details of its transformative end-to-end design and construction platform.

Every building should not be a one-off prototype. Katerra's approach to building more closely mirrors the scaled systems approaches of electronics and automobile manufacturing. The company's model combines technology, design, material sourcing, manufacturing, logistics, and construction into a single integrated offering. The result is a simpler alternative to the traditionally large number of vendors and suppliers necessary to complete residential and commercial building projects, with the ability to deliver faster, with superior quality, less waste, and lower costs than ever before.

Founded in 2015, Katerra has accomplished the following in just two years:

•amassed a global team of more than 550 people and attracted senior leadership and talent from groundbreaking technology brands Apple, Google, HP, Nokia, and Sandisk

•become one of the top 25 multifamily general contractors in the US with more than $500m in bookings in 2016

•built a fully operational manufacturing facility in Phoenix and roadmap for multiple additional domestic factories

•crafted plans to mainstream new mass timber building technologies in the US

With the growth of urban centers creating a continually increasing need for efficient and affordable multifamily housing, construction needs a new approach.

While digital technologies have disrupted nearly every business sector, the construction industry has remained notably stagnant in most aspects of operation. Even in 2016, while other industries had massive investments in technology, 70% of construction firms dedicated 1% or less of revenue to technology, according to JBKnowledge. With McKinsey reporting that labor-productivity growth in construction has averaged only 1 percent a year over the past two decades, the $12 trillion global construction market is primed for technological disruption aimed at improving productivity from supply sourcing to design to manufacturing and building.

Katerra's latest technology offering connects Building Information Modeling (BIM) tools and computational design directly to its ERP global supply chain infrastructure for ease of material ordering, manufacturing, tracking, and delivery. With materials and products arriving at construction sites just-in-time and ready to install, a Katerra job site more closely mirrors a process of precision-sequenced product assembly.

While currently focused on multi-family housing in the US, Katerra plans to bring the power of its global supply chain, project management, and design services to every sector of the construction industry.

“Through our truly revolutionary integration of services, manufacturing, and powerful technology, we see an immense opportunity to help move the industry forward and make construction around the world less expensive and more sustainable, resulting in more housing, at a higher quality, faster, for less money,” said Michael Marks, executive chairman and co-founder of Katerra.

Katerra recently reported a $130 million Series C investment. Proceeds from this round will be invested in R&D, factories, and other general corporate purposes.

For more information, visit katerra.com




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