viboo wins CHF 150,000 to reduce building energy consumption with self-learning predictive control for smart thermostats

viboo offers Predictive Control as a Service (PCaas) to manufacturers of building energy system components. The first platform release will feature a unique self-learning predictive control for smart thermostats allowing to reduce the energy consumption of heating and cooling systems in buildings by 20 to 40% while improving users’ comfort. viboo’s technology is based on a combination of physics-informed machine learning and mathematical optimization. Due to its flexibility, the technology also allows for easy integration of demand-side management (DSM). 

Buildings are responsible for a third of the world’s energy consumption and CO2 emissions. While building refurbishments are expensive, building control systems can be easily upgraded and their operation optimized at significantly lower costs. Operating a building energy system using Self-Learning Predictive Control— which is state-of-the-art for climate control in buildings— saves significant amounts of energy while increasing thermal comfort. viboo is currently the only firm providing easily scalable PCaaS to manufacturers of building energy system components.

viboo plans to launch its PCaaS platform this winter. The startup has lined up pilot projects with market-leading heating equipment manufacturers and large building owners. The CHF 150,000 Venture Kick award will support their software development and will kick off further feature integrations, such as DSM with buildings.

Worldwide, the energy used for heating and cooling buildings will increase from 26.6 petawatt hours in 2020 to 39 petawatt hours in 2050. With energy savings of 20-40%, the savings potential is CHF 560 million and CHF 740 million per year for residential and commercial buildings in Switzerland, respectively. Moreover, the rising share of renewable and intermittent electricity generation requires approaches such as DSM in the building domain.

viboo is a spinoff of the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) and was co-founded by Felix Bünning, CEO, Benjamin Huber, CTO, and Matthias Sulzer, CFO.

“Venture Kick was a very valuable experience for us as a deep tech spin-off. Coming from research, we had a rather tech-centric view of our product and company at the beginning. Venture Kick really helped us to reshape our pitches and to sharpen our value proposition. I can only recommend it to any start-up,” said Felix Bünning, CEO of viboo.

From Venture Kick press release: