One company that intrigues me and I would consider investing with if I worked for a VC is SNUPI Technologies. SNUPI stands for Sensor Nodes Utilizing Powerline Infrastructure. The name obviously sounds high-tech and the technology sounds complicated as it is supposed to offer a competitive advantage of having a 10-year power life by lowering the power consumption used in wireless communication, yet the product, which is called Wally, seems like a simple solution to a very expensive and frequent problem. Wally is an in-home monitoring device that detects for water lakes so the homeowner can avoid mold, rot, and other sometimes permanent water damage. I just bought a home and there always improvements homeowners want to make, but fixing rot and water damage sounds like just about the worst way to spend money on a home. Friends of mine recently spent thousands of dollars repairing water damage and rot in their home. I know owners and developers of condominium and apartment buildings who regularly worry about the damage that water can do to their buildings. The impact of water damage looks to be huge. According to John Cook of Geekwire in his article, ‘SNUPI raises $7.5M for sensor network Wally, looks to detect water leaks in homes’, “The Insurance Information Institute estimated that 14 million homeowners suffered from damage due to water, freezing and mold in 2011, which resulted in $11 billion in property loss.” www.geekwire.com/2014/snupi-raises-7-5m-series-home-sensor-network-wally/
The $299 cost seems like a good price point to pay to avoid this expense later.
I think the Wally device and SNUPI Technologies is at the forefront and will compete with the major competitors in the market offering home sensor technologies. They are rethinking this existing market by offering technology that powers for 10 years and rarely needs to be replaced. While SNUPI’s customers, homeowners, seem like obvious targets, they could also expand this to include large scale developers trying to avoid the damaging impact of water leaks.
Finally, SNUPI Technologies is full of ideas for what else the technology could provide to its customers. They say it may offer positive information when the homeowner is selling his home by showing a potential buyer that the house was well taken care and they plan to provide healthy home suggestions to homeowners based on the data the technology will collect.