BuildingConnected is a platform to help construction firms manage the details of a job, with the aim to help save time and money on building projects. Today, the startup announced it had raised $8.5 million in Series A financing from Crosslink Capital, Homebrew, Freestyle, Bee Partners and Brick and Mortar.
BuildingConnected pulled in a seed round of $2.2 earlier this year, bringing the total funding to build out the platform up to $10.7 million to date.
Founder Dustin DeVan started the company after working in commercial construction for building and project management for several years. He was an engineer by trade, working with the firm Bechtel when he came up with an idea to streamline bid management for major construction jobs.
Other solutions such as SmartBid and Procore exist already. Managers could also cobble together a something to keep things organized using Excel and Google Docs, but DeVan believes that to be an inferior way to manage construction projects.
"The problem with all of the performance solutions, because I used to use them all, is they require you to maintain a static content database. The problem is people move from company to company all the time," DeVan told TechCrunch. "So you go out to bid on a construction project and you realize your normal contact no longer works there."
BuildingConnected aims to help managers build an up to date bid list and include data such as proposals and drawings, integrate those with services such as Box and Ignite and then create and build on projects from there in one place. It also allows contractors to communicate with one another on a project and make changes within the platform based on that conversation in much the same way as a team can make real-time changes in Google Docs.
The platform will also provide business intelligence tools such as analytics tracking where projects are coming from - an important component for contractors to figure out where bid proposals might be getting lost.
BuildingConnected's list of features include:
- Performance Analytics: Make smarter decisions, faster with aggregated company data that tracks progress and win-rates while helping you plan for growth.
- Historical Cost Data: Leverage your data to plan future projects more efficiently through access to historical cost information.
- Relationship Tracking: Organize and track institutional knowledge for insight into your past vendor experiences and behavior.
- Pre-qualifications: Access easy-to-use, customizable pre-qualification forms and gain real-time visibility into which subcontractors are already prequalified.
- Integrated Cloud Storage: Unify your company around a single, secure cloud storage solution with continuous access to up-to-date files.
- NDAs & Sealed Bids: Keep confidential information secure with simple NDAs and electronically sealed bids.
More than 250 of the country's top general contractors now use BuildingConnected to bid on construction projects every month, according to BuildingConnected - including a new partnership agreement with Turner Construction Company, one of the biggest construction management companies in the U.S.
DeVan mentioned over the phone that he expected his startup to have more than 1,000 general contractors using the platform by 2016, which would make BuildingConnected the largest provider of bid management services.
"The construction industry has a complex value chain that cries out for a network-centric technology," David Silvermann of CrossLink Capital, the lead investor in BuildingConnected's Series A, said of the investment. "BuildingConnected is the perfect solution for connecting construction professionals so they can make better, more profitable decisions about their businesses."