Autodesk bets on water management to benefit from the Biden plan

Autodesk bets on water management to benefit from the Biden plan
Autodesk bets on water management to benefit from the Biden plan

Three weeks after announcing it, it’s confirmed: Autodesk has just spent more than 850 million euros – $ 1 billion – to buy Innovyze. On behalf of third parties, this company located in Portland (Oregon) and self-proclaimed “world leader in digital twins in water infrastructure” collects, processes, distributes and evacuates it for its 3,000 international customers.

“We did not have a strong presence on the water while this issue will become more and more important. For example, California cannot meet its needs alone and must bring in from other states ”, explains, exclusively to La Tribune, Nicolas Mangon, vice-president of marketing and strategy for architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) at Autodesk.

“The market is huge”

Nineteen years to the day after having acquired, from the company Revit, the digital model known as BIM – for « building information modeling », the multinational based in Boston (Massachusetts) wants to bring this new modeling service to its customers. Like Bouygues, which is already building buildings, roads, dams and treatment plants, in short, infrastructure connected to water. “The market is huge, because there is not yet enough digitization”, continues Nicolas Mangon.

He doesn’t think he can say so well. Suez and Schneider Electric announced on March 25, 2021 the creation of a joint venture «Of digital water» to develop and market “A common offer of innovative digital solutions for the management of the water cycle”.

“This joint venture will support municipal water operators as well as manufacturers in accelerating their digital transformation by providing them with a set of software solutions that are unique on the market for planning, operation, maintenance and the optimization of water treatment infrastructures ”, the two French mastodons wrote in a joint press release.

According to the data that Autodesk’s VP AEC has in his possession, between household consumption, that of agriculture and that of industry, nearly 60% of water is also wasted across the Atlantic. . “Between the water which is available and that which is used, enormous quantities are lost”, he insists.

Already partner of the city of Paris

In the same way that the US giant is a partner of the city of Paris for the redevelopment of the Eiffel Tower site, it will now provide its partners with connected objects and sensors on hydraulic infrastructures. “Using artificial intelligence makes it possible to predict system losses, to understand them and to anticipate problems”, assures Nicolas Mangon. Especially since all the data will be coupled with the weather forecast and data from previous natural disasters.

What constitutes the big acquisition from a financial point of view in the history of Autodesk should allow it to strengthen in France and in Germany, in addition to the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia. The VP AEC also wants to simplify Innovyze’s offer to offer it to small design offices and regions.

“180,000 local authorities managing water in the world need such a solution”, he asserts.

Outraged “The democratization of [cette] technology ‘ to cope with “A problem that concerns the whole planet”, the multinational intends to position itself as a generalist player in Biden’s infrastructure plan. In mid-November, she also offered the Norwegian Spacemaker for 203 million euros – 240 million dollars -. The latter specializes in AI and the design of buildings and cities at the service of architects, urban planners and real estate developers.

Also Read: Five Questions About Biden’s $ 3 Trillion Infrastructure Plan

Egis and LafargeHolcim also interested

However, the American software publisher is not the only one to be interested. In addition to Egis (Caisse des Dépôts group) which dreams of it, the Franco-Swiss concrete and cement group, LafargeHolcim, has just announced the finalization of the acquisition of Firestone Building Products, the American subsidiary of the Japanese group Bridgestone Corporation, for 2.9 Billions of Euro’s.

“This specialist in roofing, waterproofing and building envelope technologies testifies to our desire to evolve from a profession of producer of materials to that of aggregator of solutions with support, advice and services”, explained , in January 2021 at La Tribune, the CEO of LafargeHolcim France François Petry.

Read also: “Cement and low-carbon concrete involve massive investments” François Petry, LafargeHolcim France

Already having fifteen factories in the United States for a turnover of 1.8 billion euros in 2020, the European group intends to benefit as much from the American investment plan for infrastructure. Firestone Building Products has “Solid growth prospects, accelerated by the many opportunities in President Biden’s plan « Build Back Better » », LafargeHolcim CEO Jan Jenish said in a press release quoted by AFP.

As well as Saint-Gobain

For its part, in winter 2019-2020, the French Saint-Gobain has acquired the American Continental Building Products, a major player in plaster across the Atlantic, for 1.287 billion euros. In a country which is the group’s second largest market, behind France, plaster has become the group’s leading industrial profession.

“At the same time, the construction market is accelerating in the United States with 15 to 20% of growth margins compared to its long-term average”, underlined, in March 2020, the future CEO of the listed group with The gallery. « We are aiming for more than 10 million dollars of synergies in year 1 and more than 50 million dollars in year 3 ”, added Benoît Bazin.

Read also: After having successfully reorganized, Saint-Gobain aims for zero carbon

Supported by his former rival in the Democratic primaries, Pete Buttigieg, now Secretary of Transport, Biden’s plan includes, in particular, modernizing 32,000 kilometers of roads and highways, and repairing some 10,000 bridges.

Read also: A Biden plan to 2,000 billion, corporate taxes to finance it


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