Plant PreFab secures multi-million pound backing
Californian based start-up Plant PreFab has announced that it’s secured a US$6.7m investment in its recent Series A funding round, namely from Obvious Ventures and Amazon led venture capital funder the Alexa Fund.
Plant PreFab, which creates and builds sustainable single and multifamily prefabricated homes, aims to construct homes faster and typically with less costs and construction waste – making it an innovative player in the construction industry, which is crippled by rising costs and mounting demand for homes.
The company says it can reduce construction time by as much as half and slash building costs by 10-25%.
It is notable that Amazon has chosen to back such a company, with the move solidifying Amazon Alexa’s place in the home. By investing in Plant PreFab Amazon is safeguarding the future of the voice technology by working with home providers to bring to the market a new era of smart homes fitted out with Alexa controlled devices.
Director of the Alexa Fund, Paul Bernard, commented: "Voice has emerged as a delightful technology in the home, and there are now more than 20,000 Alexa-compatible smart home devices from 3,500 different brands. We're thrilled to support [Plant Prefab] as they make sustainable, connected homes more accessible to customers and developers."
Steve Glenn, Plant Prefab's CEO added: "We aspire to make the process of building a home far easier, faster, and less expensive in major cities and part of this effort involves making sure our homes meet our clients’ lifestyle needs, and having greater and more effective smart home technology and integration is part of that. Amazon is certainly a leader in this domain and we hope and expect to learn much from them."
The move is a strategic one from Amazon and follows the release of a number of Alexa-powered smart-home devices over the last few weeks. Although not its first attempt to integrate Alexa on a national level – it already has a deal in place with US construction firm Lennar Corporation – the investment is just one more way that we can expect to see Amazon ruling the smart-home sector.