On November 22 and 23, 2019, the first innovation competition devoted to the office segment took place in Bucharest, an event that brought together over 100 specialists from the tech and real estate industry. The competition “On the fast track to futureproof” was organized and developed under the umbrella of the innovation strategy of Skanska, one of the largest developers of office buildings worldwide, together with Proptech Romania, the first Romanian innovation platform designed for the real estate domain.
18 finalist local and international teams had the opportunity to compete in the 6 categories of the competition, which focused on topics specific to the office industry.
The challenges addressed by the Skanska and Proptech Romania teams to those who entered the competition were to identify and think of digital solutions and platforms that would add value to office buildings, such as traceability through digitalization in all the essential stages of the life of a building, from design, up to construction and operation, automating repetitive tasks, using artificial intelligence, finding intelligent solutions to identify the behavioral features of residents of office buildings, education and active involvement in community life and streamlining the rental process.
The local team INDATAWETRUST has got the highest score and was appointed the winner of the competition. INDATAWETRUST has created a platform designed to increase the satisfaction of those who work in office buildings and to provide them with an effortless experience during a working day.
The 2nd place was won by the Quantum team, consisting of four 16 years old high school students of the International High School of Informatics in Bucharest. They have developed a solution for automating the flow of documents from Skanska.
The 3rd place was won by the Bright Spaces team, who developed a customized technology solution for the process of offering office rooms.
Aurelia Luca, Managing Director of Skanska Romania: “The Skanska Proptech Hackathon ended after 48 hours of brainstorming, long discussions turned into complex software solutions, and lots of fun! It was a very intense creative work, work was done against the clock, from early in the morning until late at night, and the atmosphere created led to a real effervescence and chemistry between teams, mentors and ambassadors of challenges. The mix of adrenaline, energy and involvement from the participants had spectacular results. The proposed solutions are functional, disruptive, creative, and very difficult to judge. The hackathon is over, but the beautiful part of developing ideas is just beginning”.
Ciprian Pasca, Co Founder Proptech Romania: “I am pleasantly surprised to see an increasing interest in such competitions, which represent not only a platform of connection between technology companies and real estate, but also a solid foundation of opportunities which have further the potential to generate new investments and business models. The registered teams were very well- trained and, for this reason, the level of competition was an advanced one. The appetite for technology in the local real estate market is growing and we will surely see more and more proptech digital solutions that will attract investment for development and implementation. ”
In addition to the three big winners of the competition, there were also Fortech companies from Cluj-Napoca to be distinguished, which were winners of the community engagement category with the Andocate solution, PaperBit from Timisoara, the winner of the RPA / AI category, VegaComp from Bucharest, the leader of the digital twin category, but also Carbon Heroes, a team from Finland that has responded to the challenge of creating an educational platform for carbon footprint calculation. The Carbon Heroes team also received a special mention from the jury as Skanska’s most promising future partner.
The judging criteria allowed for the understanding of the problem, the feasibility and validation of the proposed solution, but also the degree of expertise of each team. The jury included: Aurelia Luca – Managing Director Skanska Property Romania, Anna Tryfon – Innovation Manager Skanska CEE, Catalin Drăgoi – Europe Connected Services Center Leader @ Honeywell Building Solutions, Cătălin Pană – Project Director Skanska Property Romania, Anne Marie Diaconu – Leasing & Asset Director Skanska Property Romania, Radu Ștefan – Key Account Manager Avaelgo, Microsoft partner and Ciprian Pasca, Co-Founder of Proptech Romania.
All the solutions presented in the competition, including those that did not rank among the first three, will go through a thorough analysis process. The Skanska team will estimate the potential for developing ideas that are in the inception phase and the potential for implementation for key solutions, thus outlining the action plan under the umbrella of the Skanska innovation strategy.
The creative process was facilitated by Skanska mentors, as well as mentors from Microsoft and Honeywell, who supported the teams throughout the competition.