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Aussie tech start-up acquired by GE, sets sights on bigger markets

By Catherine Knowles
Mon 2 May 2016
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Current by GE has acquired Australian technology start-up Daintree Networks with the intention of bringing intelligent building solutions to the world.

According to GE, the acquisition will deliver open, standards-based wireless enterprise industrial internet solution for energy management and intelligent environment applications, making it easier to save. According to the company, the combined offering will enable GE to bring scale and access to a global marketplace that will charge the growth and adoption of Daintree’s Australian-made technologies.

Upon completion of the acquisition, Current will integrate Daintree’s employees in Australia, California and Massachusetts into its structure.

“Daintree Networks is a great example of Australian technology innovation at the heart of the industrial internet,” says Geoff Culbert, GE ANZ president and CEO.

“The combination of Daintree with Current will be a game-changer in the development of applications that drive productivity and make intelligent buildings a reality. GE has the scale and global reach to turbo charge the growth and adoption of Daintree’s Australian-made technology,” he says.

According to GE, today 90% of the world’s small- to mid-sized buildings do not have building automation systems. Integrating Daintree Networks’ open-standard networked wireless control solution, ControlScope, into Current’s building automation portfolio addresses this problem, the company says.

The joint solution links data from lighting and HVAC systems directly to Predix, GE’s Industrial Internet software platform - allowing customers to analyse their energy consumption and identify data patterns to increase efficiency and reduce power levels, GE says.

“By combining Daintree’s open-standard control and sensing technology with GE’s Predix platform, Current’s building automation platform and its energy-as-a-service offerings, we’ll deliver the industry’s first next-generation, scalable cloud-based energy management and facilities optimisation platform for every building type and size,” says Maryrose Sylvester, Current president and CEO.

“Our combined strengths will help customers, big or small, achieve a reduced carbon footprint and increased energy savings, and provide a solution for ecosystem partners to grow,” she says.

This acquisition brings to Current an ecosystem of value-added resellers (VARs), system integrators (SIs) and device partners with experience in helping enterprises deploy and optimise ControlScope in commercial, retail and industrial environments, GE says.

Built to established open protocol standards, Daintree’s ControlScope technology is fully engineered in Australia and can be deployed wirelessly and securely in almost any enterprise ensuring interoperability between products offered by multiple device vendors. To date, Daintree has focused on building their customer base in North America. This acquisition gives them access to the globe, GE says.

Derek Proudian, Daintree Networks CEO, says, “Daintree has been in the enterprise Industrial Internet space for a long time, so we are excited to join Current in bringing customers an enhanced lighting and energy management solution that can be applied to a wide range of buildings and workspaces including retail stores, banks and office environments.

“Through this integration, we will help our customers achieve the promise of the Industrial Internet: greater control, lower maintenance costs and increased operational efficiencies.”

The acquisition comes just six months after the formation of Current, a startup within GE. Current integrates GE's LED and onsite power businesses with GE’s industrial strength Predix platform to deliver the a cost effective, energy management platform. GE’s Predix platform is open, flexible, and securely connects multiple third party devices and assets to the industrial internet, the company says.

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