Venture capital trio invest £5m into Modulous



Three global venture capital firms have invested £5m into Modulous, a digital construction firm that is using a software platform to design, manufacture and deliver sustainable and affordable housing across the UK.

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Blackhorn Ventures — which led the investment round — CEMEX Ventures and GroundBreak Ventures have all backed the London-based company to help it expand its building design team and grow its technology group.

Modulous has created a software platform to streamline design and overhaul the inefficient logistics that weigh down the sector. 

It has also developed a precision-engineered apartment product that enables high quality, affordable, sustainable homes to be computer designed and delivered to a specific cost.

Unlike other companies utilising MMC, Modulous is an asset-light business with no factories. 

Its global supply chain and investment in logistics is set to enable it to become more scalable and responsive to the cyclical nature of housebuilding.

The Modulous design software platform combines with its own modular building system, allowing developers and housing associations to specify the sort of building they want, harvest local planning regulations to determine what is permitted, and then generate designs that accurately detail the precise cost. 

Because every building component is mapped within the system, it is possible to monitor and measure the carbon footprint of every single building on a mass scale. 

The platform orchestrates the logistics to ensure that components arrive just in time and sequence, which can play a critical role in helping inflate construction companies’ margins.

“Our digitally-led approach to project management and innovative ‘kit of parts’ platform delivers sustainable, high quality housing at a fraction of the time of traditional construction,” said Chris Bone, CEO at Modulous.

“As the costs of materials rise and profit margins are continually squeezed, Modulous provides partners with the end-to-end tools necessary to accurately estimate project costs, compress programme timescales and mitigate against the risks inherent in planning, design and implementation. 

“It’s a system that solves multiple problems plaguing the industry for decades, while engaging flexible, net zero-ready technologies that allow our partners to realise high-speed assembly and installation.”

Phillip O’Connor, managing partner and co-founder of Blackhorn Ventures, added: “This is about far more than modular housing. 

“Technology will not replace the many talented architects, engineers and construction workers, but simply enable them to focus on what they do best, making their jobs more profitable and enjoyable.” 

Mateo Zimmerman, investment manager at CEMEX Ventures, commented: "We have to put industrialized construction and MMC at the heart of design, manufacturing, logistics and assembly. 

“The change to a ‘product mindset’ (instead of project mindset) will open up many opportunities and benefits for our industry, such as efficiency, climate action and sustainable profitability. 

“Modulous is offering an unrivalled value proposition based on technology, flexibility and scalability.”

Scott Kaplanis, partner of GroundBreak Ventures, said: “The scalability of the Modulous suite of products is vast and its ability to work with governments around the world to help solve global challenges of creating and delivering sustainable and affordable housing means we see a huge opportunity to grow the firm and support local construction firms and supply chains.” 



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