May 2018

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Jan MattssonEMAIL INTERVIEW –  Ken Sinclair and Jan Mattsson

Jan Mattsson
Sales Director Strategic Accounts
Schneider Electric, Finland Oy

Repurpose & Retrofit

Their added value is great but both come with a host of challenges, starting from lack of common frameworks and standards all the way to user incompatibility.

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New buildings will be peanuts when it comes to making our built environment smart - Dominating the market will be retrofitting and repurposing. Their added value is great but both come with a host of challenges, starting from lack of common frameworks and standards all the way to user incompatibility. Repurposing and retrofitting don’t make for flashy headlines and the discussion is often monopolized by the few who bring it up. What we all need - that itch we all need scratched - is to know ”Why and how?”

We’re dedicating the first day of Nordic Smart Building Convention 2018 for the theme Repurpose & Retrofit. On stage you’ll see the tech providers and RE owners, operators and users giving straight answers for honest questions. Though we’re all about making the built environment smart, we are not afraid to ask whether it has any true value and now whom.

Taking part in the Retrofitting panel discussion ”The Challenge of Getting Smarter” is Jan Mattsson, Sales Director Strategic Accounts at  Schneider Electric, who was kind enough to give his straight forward answers to the basic yet often unasked questions of the industry.

Sinclair:  What do you see as the key benefits in retrofitting intelligent technology into commercial Real Estate?

Mattsson:  I believe that new installation and retrofit do not differ as much as people think when it comes to Intelligent technology: Intelligence is as smart as the users make it. New technology and systems offer possibilities to develop buildings as a service platform and make them work more efficiently. It’s important to understand that the open platform of new technology offers the possibilities not just the hardware on site only. Today most services are provided in Software platform so this is the game changer - Analytics, IA and Services are the future.

Sinclair:  Can the business models and now perceived value of "dumb" real estate be applied to a property's new intelligent form?

Mattsson:  Yes I think it can. Analytics bring calculated value based on the building performance and metering without involving people and new platforms of intelligent buildings make it possible to get the overall feeling and people perspective of the values. So when we have a possibility to combine these two there is huge unseen value to provide for dumb real estate.
Sinclair:  How should those business models be changed?

Mattsson:  I think the biggest change in the formal models is to try and start trusting technology. 

[an error occurred while processing this directive]Sinclair:  What are the key challenges, in your opinion, in retrofitting intelligent technology in to buildings?

Mattsson:  Usually the technology is only one part of a bigger project, even the retrofitting or modernization phases of buildings. So the challenge is that technology is out of influence of building owners where the real value appears. The value that is created is sustainability, efficiency and customer satisfaction, but when there is outside constructor these values are too far away from the project. Additionally usually if the building owners control the developing of their building themselves the problem is that KPI measure is based on building process budget and sustainability is not set as a goal. In worst cases the people who are responsible of lifecycle phase are not even talking with construction people, you can even see internal competition between same company units.

Sinclair:  What can RE owners and the technology providers do to overcome those challenges?

Mattsson:  They should keep decision making in their own hands and update the guidelines of building process. Hire outside help to drive intelligent building process to really drive the change. Start trying.

Sinclair:  What are you most looking forward to discussing at the Nordic Smart Building Convention 2018?

Mattsson:  Networking and discussing with people how the smartest buildings in the world have achieved their goals. There is a clear common way that these processes have gone to goal.


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