Munich-based tado° has developed an IoT solution for controlling a house’s temperature to make energy usage more effective
Having only recently closed their Series B funding round back in October, the German smart home climate control startup tado° announced on Tuesday that they have finished closing another round, bringing in a $23 million Series C and raising their total VC funding to a steamy $57 million.
The newfound funding comes from INVEN Capital, the VC arm of the Czech multinational energy conglomerate CEZ GROUP. The Czechs join tado°’s list of impressive previous investors, including Siemens AG, Statkraft Venture Capital, Target Partners, Shortcut Ventures, and BayBG.
Founded in 2011 by CEO Christian Deilmann, CTO Johannes Schwarz, and CMO Leopold von Bismarck, Munich-based tado° has developed an IoT solution for controlling a house’s temperature to make energy usage more effective.
The company says that air conditioning accounts for 45-50% of the average household’s electricity bill, with heating taking up as much as 60% in the winter months. With their Smart AC control, which sells for $199, they claim that families can save up to 31% on average from their current bill.
Their device, which they say connects with all remote controlled ACs, tracks users’ locations via their app to identify when they have left their home, knowing to turn itself off. Before returning home, users can access their AC, switching it back on through the app.
It also connects with local meteorological reports to understand what kind of weather it is up against, and adjust accordingly.
Moving forward from this round, Deilmann told the press that, “We plan to use the new funding to expand our market leadership and develop further services for our users.”
“Our ambition is to lead this market with superior user experiences, saving money and maximizing comfort. tado° is an integral part of any smart home,” said Deilmann, explaining that, “Through interfaces to the main smart home platforms, existing and future customers can rest assured that they are equipped for the future.”
Beyond an expanded engagement with the market, which they say will include international growth, the company has stated that they will be partnering up with local utilities who can help monitor the devices to make sure that they are functioning properly.
Soothing or not secure?
In their press release, tado° notes that this funding round has established them as one of the top funded IoT startups in the world.
While this would take some further digging to confirm, it highlights the potential for companies that are coming up with highly practical IoT solutions. Wearables still seem to be a ways off from mainstream adoption and many other devices like home cameras are likely to be considered a little too gimmicky to catch on for the near term.
However the tado° team seems to have caught on to the potential of solid smart home tech that shows its users the direct benefit of saving money on their AC/heating bills, hopefully leading to high levels of adoption by consumers.
If their estimations of a $2 billion smart thermostat market by 2019 are to be believed, then they have placed themselves in a high growth industry, which is good news for them and investors.
I have some concerns about people from the local utilities possibly being able to know when you are or are not home based on the tracking feature, especially since no one would ever look twice at a service person entering the building and breaking into apartments. Hopefully the company is taking some kind of precautions on this one.
While nobody likes to come home to a sauna or ice cave, most of us feel too guilty to leave the air conditioner on when we leave the house. This device would be worth considering strongly if it meant that all I could do was control my AC from my phone, either turning it on for myself before coming home, or a few times a day for my cat.