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Saint-Gobain deploys Akila at its research center in Shanghai to reinforce sustainability achievement and employee wellness 

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Shanghai, 21 July 2022—Saint-Gobain announces its collaboration with Akila, a real-estate data and management platform that uses digital twin and AI technologies to empower data-driven decision making and ESG for large multinational portfolios, to achieve energy-saving objectives and enhance employee wellness. A pilot project, using the Akila platform and Akila energy module, has been initiated at 15,000 m2 Saint-Gobain Research Shanghai, to manage, control and optimize HVAC systems, which can reduce energy consumption and carbon emission by up to 20%. In the meanwhile, this project will continue to take employee feedback to foster a sense of ownership and engagement in the facility’s management. 

Saint-Gobain’s long-term commitment toward net-zero carbon meets Akila’s willingness to deepen sustainable innovation. Starting from HVAC control and furthering into energy simulation, this collaboration will enable Saint-Gobain Research Shanghai to optimize air quality, user satisfaction, and energy consumption by using cutting-edge AI, automation, and extensive sensors. The Akila platform offers simultaneous access to these powerful digital twin, data and control dashboards across all sites, which enables global access to bird’s-eye and ground-level view of the portfolio. The deployment of Akila offers a peerless management tool that translates directly to employee wellness by optimizing facility uptime, air quality, acoustic environments, and user feedback.  

Saint-Gobain Research Shanghai is the representative of Saint-Gobain Group to establish this collaboration with Akila. Present in China since 2005, Saint-Gobain Research Shanghai, one of the eight transversal Research Centers of the Group, supports innovation for all the businesses of the Asia-Pacific region. Its research area focuses on high-performance solutions for automotive, aerospace, healthcare and renewable energies. It is also highly active in researching innovative and sustainable solutions and materials for the construction industry. 

Alain Zanoli, Vice-President of Innovation Asia of Saint-Gobain, stated: “At Saint-Gobain, we are guided by clear Purpose and values. We are committed to Making The World A Better Home. So our partnership with Akila is a natural one, being built around shared values like health and wellness, human centricity, and solving environmental problems through innovation. Our company has a remarkable history, and we’re excited to put Akila’s digital solutions to help improve the life of our employees while contributing to reduce our CO2 footprint. This project is a first step. We are convinced that nurturing Akila in our Asia-Pacific Research and Development hub will generate a formidable opportunity to foster more innovation.” 

Philippe Obry, Akila Chief Innovation Officer and Co-founder, stated: “We see this project as just the beginning of an exciting and fruitful collaboration with Saint-Gobain. We’re looking forward to examining their products in lightweight and sustainable construction for our own projects like the Akila Lab Qingdao and NXPark Xi’an Smart Park, and embarking on a mutual cycle of global growth, development, and improvement.” 

About Saint-Gobain  

To be the worldwide leader in light and sustainable construction, Saint-Gobain designs, manufactures and distributes materials and services for the construction and industrial markets. Its integrated solutions for the renovation of public and private buildings, light construction and the decarbonization of construction and industry are developed through a continuous innovation process and provide sustainability and performance. The Group’s commitment is guided by its purpose, “MAKING THE WORLD A BETTER HOME”. €44.2 billion in sales in 2021; 166,000 employees, located in 75 countries; Committed to achieving Carbon Neutrality by 2050; For more information about Saint-Gobain, visit www.saint-gobain.com.cn. 

About Akila 

Akila is an Asia-based digital twin platform harnessing real-time data and AI to streamline ESG reporting and optimize the performance, sustainability, and human-centricity of buildings and cities. Backed by strategic partnerships with Microsoft, Dassault Systèmes and Aden Group, Akila currently has a growing team of 80+ members and 3.5M square meters managed across 60 sites of deployment. Akila was recognized in 2022 by the World Economic Forum as a Technology Pioneer. 

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