Swiss-based ABB is investing to advance its already large stake in the $100 billion and growing energy management and efficiency markets with its acquisition of German smart homes firm Eve Systems.
The Eve acquisitions almost definitely strengthens ABB’s market position in smart home products based on the Matter and Thread interoperational standard and wireless connectivity technology. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Building energy use accounts for between 30 and 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions globally, so ABB views the Eve deal as part and parcel of its holistic approach to decarbonization and the residential, commercial and industrial energy transition.
The smart home products market is expanding exponentially in demand from both new construction and retrofits, according to reports. The ABB-Eve combination can accelerate the comprehensive rollout of energy efficiency technologies which can talk to each other and owners-operators seamlessly, the companies noted.
“Our focus is on being the best and most comprehensive provider of smart technology and innovation for our global customers," Mike Mustapha, president of Smart Buildings Division at ABB Electrification, said. "Matter and Thread, in which Eve is a leader, is a game-changing development for the uptake of smart home technology.”
“It allows different devices and services to integrate flawlessly, intuitively, and securely, making it possible for people to manage their energy and their surroundings conveniently and safely,” Mustapha added. “It is an exciting point of growth for the industry and this acquisition brings our smart buildings commitment directly to the consumer.”
Explained basically, Matter is the connecting layer within apps to allow for interoperability between smart home devices, such as home automation to iPhones and Android phones in the same household. Thread is the wireless mesh network protocol that allows all devices to effectively and efficiency speak to each other, according to ABB.
Tech giants such as Google, Apple, Amazon and Samsung are already backing the Matter and Thread approach to interoperability, and it apparently may likely become an industry-wide standard at some point.
“Our teams at Eve Systems have worked hard to earn our status as innovators in smart home technology by solving key challenges with a first mover advantage,” Eve founder Markus Fest said in a statement. “We have collaborated closely with the technology community to develop and harness Matter and Thread technology and protocols. This acquisition is a validation of our achievements so far.”
In ABB’s 2022 Energy Efficiency Investment Survey involving thousands of companies, energy use account for close to 23 percent of annual operating costs, on average. The survey, conducted by Sapio Research, also included 207 U.S. companies.
“The built environment offers a multitude of opportunities for property owners and tenants alike to reduce costs via greater energy efficiency,” Michael Plaster, lead business manager at ABB Electrification U.S., wrote in a column for EnergyTech late last year.
“The key for building owners, perhaps, is to start with projects that will produce measurable savings reliably.”
Eve Systems products include the Eve Flare portable LED lamp, the Eve Shutter Switch, Eve Energy smart plug and Eve Motion sensor, among other offerings. The company was founded in 1999.