Highlighting the potential of the offsite Industry
With the Guardian reporting this week that ‘from businesses to policymakers, there is growing interest in offsite built housing as a possible solution to the UK's critical housing shortage' whilst also questioning whether it is time for the offsite industry to go mainstream, it is increasingly arguable that offsite manufactured building technology will take the UK construction sector by storm.
Although some may state that the offsite industry is still in its infancy, and is classified as a cottage industry, others, like Tom Bloxham MBE Chairman of Urban Splash, are paving the way in highlighting the potential of the industry. The high-profile marketing campaign surrounding Urban Splash' modular hoUSe projects has highlighted the benefits of using offsite technology whilst also combatting archaic views of modular homes being restricted to post- war temporary accommodation solutions. The glossy campaign has catapulted the image of the industry and informed the discussion with hard evidence of the benefits.
Offsite manufacture is a progressive step that helps to challenge outdated assumptions about the construction sector and encourage more young professionals into the industry. The sector will generate savings in the long term, initially it will require investment but the overwhelming message has been that companies at every level of the supply chain should invest in offsite manufacture and construction processes sooner rather than later, or risk being left behind.
Explore Offsite at Ecobuild will form a ground-breaking showcase of offsite construction solutions that will deliver a comprehensive display of offsite technologies and full-scale construction of buildings using offsite technology. This special feature will demonstrate the very latest offsite innovations and will be supported by a comprehensive range of free Offsite Technology Masterclasses.
Not only will be Explore Offsite at Ecobuild masterclasses provide you with a key opportunity to discover and expand your knowledge of the ever-evolving sector by taking advantage of the Q&A sessions within each Masterclass, the exhibition itself will be brimming with offsite industry leading organisations who will be able to educate, and inform you, about utilising offsite manufacture and construction within your own projects.
Companies you will be able to meet:
- B&K Structures
- British Gypsum
- British Precast
- EOS Facades
- Hadley Group
- Medite Smartply
- SIG Offsite
Read the January 2017 issue of Construction Global here
XYZ Reality receives £20m to develop Assisted Reality
Founded in 2017, XYZ Reality aims to "revolutionise" the construction sector with its Engineering-Grade Augmented Reality (AR) solution, Holosite.
Designed to enable an on time and on budget delivery of construction projects, by eliminating building errors, HoloSite has been available to select customers through an early access programme and has already been used on projects totalling a value of over £1.5bn in the last year.
With approximately 98% of construction megaprojects facing cost overruns or delays and 7-11% of project costs being spent on correcting errors, XYZ Reality’s purpose-built integrated AR solution directly addresses these issues.
With its safety certified AR hardhat, cloud platform and in-built proprietary software, Holosite accurately positions high fidelity 3D design models on construction sites, enabling teams to build it right, first time. The technology system has been used on complex construction projects including data centres, pharmaceutical facilities and airports.
This funding will be used to accelerate the company’s ambition of transforming projects by preparing for HoloSite’s commercial launch in the USA and continuing investment in strengthening research and development. The company is also growing its London team to include key hires across technology, manufacturing, sales and marketing.
David Mitchell, Founder and CEO of XYZ Reality, said developing its engineering-Grade AR solution helping construction teams identify errors in real-time is just the start.
"The next phase is Assisted Reality, where our spatial computing technology will have the intelligence to automatically detect and report issues in the field. And ultimately, the goal is builders building from holograms. Our vision of developing world changing products aligns with Octopus Ventures’ mission of investing in companies that are powering the next industrial revolution. We look forward to building history.”
The latest round of funding is led by Octopus Ventures, one of the largest and most active venture investors in Europe, known for its commitment of investing in companies and founders that are changing the world. Octopus Ventures has a strong track record, spanning investment in health, fintech, consumer, B2B software, and deep tech. This includes WaveOptics, one of Octopus Ventures’ early investments in Augmented Reality, which was recently acquired by Snap Inc.
Rebecca Hunt, early-stage investor at Octopus Ventures, said: "We’ve always invested in entrepreneurs leading industry change and XYZ is doing just that. It's solving a massive problem that costs the construction industry billions every year, using its Engineering-Grade Augmented Reality solution to spearhead a shift in the sector’s approach. The founding team of David, Umar and Murray have deep domain and technical expertise, which we believe makes XYZ uniquely placed to drive this transformation.”
XYZ Reality also announces a new partnership with Mace, for the construction of a hyper-scale data centre in Europe. With speed to market being particularly essential for mission critical builds, HoloSite’s AR technology will have a significant role in supporting an accurate and time effective build for Mace, which last week appointed Jon McElroy its new Managing Director for International Technology.
Mace Technical Director, Stephen Henley, said: “Mace has built a reputation of redefining the boundaries of ambition, always bringing efficiency, innovation and responsibility to our projects. With the implementation of XYZ’s groundbreaking AR system, we continue to be committed to delivering projects faster, safer and better than ever before.”
Five years ago, Heather Bellini of Goldman Sachs Research expected virtual and augmented reality to become an $80 billion market by 2025.
But according to new research by global tech market advisory firm ABI Research, nearly 28 million augmented and mixed reality smart glasses will ship in 2026, while the total global AR/MR market will surpass $175 billion in the same year.
"Major tech players across hardware, software, and services look familiar in the consumer space, contributing to strong and consistent overall growth," says Eric Abbruzzese, Research Director for ABI Research. "Those big tech names, with active investment and product ranging from already available, to announced, to all-but-announced, are creating a consumer AR market that will be dynamic and welcoming rather than struggling and immature."