Latin America. The Mexican startup Solar X won the first edition of the INCmty Disruptair Challenge, an initiative, convened by INCmty and Daikin, that challenges entrepreneurs in Latin America to identify or solve problems related to the HVAC industry and its supply chain.
This initiative sought 100 MVP Projects (minimum viable product) and Startups (newly created companies) that were in "pre seed and seed" stages, that is, in a moment of early training, that were "transforming the HVAC industry" through three verticals: Democratization of the HVAC industry and the culture of the Air, Sustainability for the HVAC industry and Improvement solutions for the value chain.
However, the dynamics of the INCmty Disruptair Challenge awards were carried out through the Daikin Challenge Final Pitch, a space where the participants who successfully passed different regional filters and Demo Days were announced. It is worth noting that Duván Chaverra, editorial chief of our magazine ARC Latin America, was part of the group of evaluators during the regional selections.
To the grand final came: Bono (Mexico) represented by Nicolás Bodek; Flair (Chile) represented by Pablo Farah and Solar X, (Mexico) represented by Dario Casanova. And the awards ceremony took place within the framework of the INCmty entrepreneurship festival, which took place from October 15 to 17, in Cintermex (Monterrey).
The first place, declared as the winner of the challenge, obtained 150,000 MXN, a trip to Japan to establish value connections and an accelerated incubation process, that is, an accompaniment to strengthen their business project.
Solar X, which took this category of the winner, gives access to all types of investors to renewable energy projects that help the environment, while generating high and safe returns on a monthly basis. These opportunities finance via crowdfunding to the industrial and government sector quickly, since their experience achieves an efficient, safe, economical and non-engaging due diligence.
The second place, which won an economic prize of 100,000 MXN, is Flair, a PropTech-Healthtech that creates well-being focused on people, while reducing carbon footprint, achieves this purpose through the continuous adaptation of the environmental conditions of indoor spaces, which allows to reduce energy consumption and create healthy workplaces, using advanced air analytics and intuitive interfaces.
Finally, the third place, which received an award of 50,000 MXN, is Bono, a platform for companies to quickly and easily measure and analyze their carbon footprint. In addition, it is also a marketplace of decarbonization services so that companies can attack their areas of opportunity and reduce their carbon footprint. The services in the marketplace cover different sectors, from energy efficiency, equipment change and electrification, renewable energy, among others.
The qualifying jury of the Disruptair Challenge, was formed by Josue Delgado, CEO of INCmty of Tecnológico de Monterrey; Sergio Armella, CEO of Grupo CYVSA; Raisingh Rawat, Director of Project Sales (VRV & Applied) of Daikin Mexico; and Penny Locaso, "the world's first Happiness Hacker", considered one of Australia's most influential businesswomen.
Looking ahead to 2023
Following the announcement of the winners, Kota Fukutoku, VP of Corporate Planning and Advocacy at Daikin Latin America Operations (DLAO), announced the renewal of the INCmty Disruptair challenge for the next edition of this festival in 2023.
"By 2050, demand for air conditioning will increase three times its current value and Latin America will be the region where access to quality air will be as important as water. We have to solve this opportunity with sustainability. Tec's vision is to train the most innovative cadres and Daikin's vision is to continue adding value through the air. Together we can create new value for the air," Fukutoku said.
Daikin's startup: Comfort Loop
Through digital transformation and the Internet of Things (IoT), Daikin founders and intrapreneurs generated a new business model that seeks to make a change in the way air conditioning is purchased: Comfort Loop.
Ricardo Rodríguez, Senior Manager of Business Development at Daikin Latin America Operations, commented: "It is the first servitization scheme for air conditioning installations, focused on improving the experience of both customer and user; with efficient systems that adapt to the needs and conditions of each project".
Hacking climate change with the power of air
The specialists, Abigail González, Commercial Manager of Comfort Loop (specialist in "air as a service"); Eleazar Rivera, Government Activities Chair of ASHRAE Monterrey Chapter; and Elizabeth Martinez, Experience Design & Program Manager at Venture Café Monterrey, shared their insights on how disrupting the HVAC air industry can change the course of climate change in the panel "Hacking Climate Change with the Power of Air."
This panel addressed the environmental problems of air and the reasons why it is a priority to devise solutions. In addition, opportunities were identified for indoor air quality, innovation and entrepreneurship to be the key tools to hack climate change from the air conditioning industry.