NEW YORK, Oct. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Cortex Intel is now fully deployed nationally, and across 10 million square feet of office property in New York City, including high-profile Class A assets like 277 Park Avenue, The Woolworth Building, and 110 William Street. Cortex Intel provides building engineers with an easy to use mobile app, powered by machine learning, to help them operate increasingly complex and sophisticated HVAC systems more easily and efficiently. In doing so, engineers are able to significantly reduce operating costs and increase property income, improve sustainability by cutting energy consumption, and enhance tenant satisfaction through greater control of the building environment.
At 277 Park Avenue, for instance, Cortex Intel has reduced annual operating costs by $700,000, resulting in a significant increase to net operating income and a strong boost to asset value. Portfolio-wide, Cortex is averaging an 8% annual reduction in building energy consumption for its customers, which is equivalent to taking 850 cars off the road.
Cortex Intel connects directly to a building's management system, including meters, and, in real time, distills the overwhelming amount of data being collected (typically over one hundred thousand data points per day) and condenses it into extremely simple and intuitive charts, visualizations and recommendations that the engineers can access from their mobile devices. Consequently, the building engineers can make the 20 to 50 decisions they have to make every day with better information at their fingertips – for example, when to turn up the chiller or fans, or when to shut systems down in the most energy-efficient manner – creating happy tenants, increased net generating income and positive environmental impacts.
Savanna, a New York based real estate investment management company, deployed Cortex Intel at 110 William Street about 18 months ago. "We've already achieved significant financial benefit at 110 William through Cortex Intel's platform, reducing annual operating costs by $250,000, which translates into a property valuation increase of about $5 million," said Nicholas Bienstock, Co-Managing Partner at Savanna. "The impact of Cortex Intel's technology has been substantial and we believe many other property owners will benefit from implementing it."
The Witkoff Group, owner of the office space at the historic Woolworth Building, has also deployed Cortex Intel and seen immediate results. "Seemingly small, individual decisions made every day in the management of an office building can multiply into a significant impact on the annual bottom line, and on the environment as well," said Scott C. Alper, President and Chief Investment Officer of Witkoff Group, which has deployed Cortex Intel for the office space at the historic Woolworth Building. "With Cortex Intel we've been able to improve those decisions to achieve an annualized reduction in operating costs of over $100,000."
In tandem with financial gains, Cortex Intel's positive environmental impact has been felt immediately. At 277 Park Avenue, Cortex Intel has delivered a 9% reduction in energy consumption. The Woolworth Building and 110 William have achieved 5% and 11% reductions, respectively, using Cortex Intel technology.
"While many owners have made the decision to use Cortex because of the tremendous operating efficiencies and cost savings that the product delivers, they have also found the energy and sustainability benefits of using Cortex to be enormous as well," said Bryan Bennett, CEO and Founder of Cortex. "Our 8% average reduction in energy consumption makes Cortex Intel one of the most compelling sustainability products on the market."
"By providing an effective energy efficiency product that is also cost-effective and value enhancing, Cortex Intel has established itself as a smart option for property owners and managers," explained Dana Robbins Schneider, a Managing Director at JLL who heads the firm's Energy and Sustainability Projects group, and who has introduced Cortex Intel to one of her clients. "The app provides practical real-time guidance to building engineering and operations teams, resulting in measurable operational and financial benefits in addition to sustainability impact."
Cortex Intel provides better information and insights to property managers and engineers, empowering them to run their properties more efficiently and seamlessly. Cortex Intel's recommendations are based on machine-learned historical, current, and forecasted data specific to each building, taking into account the weather forecast, day of the week, and preceding day profile to understand how best to operate the building. By constantly monitoring and analyzing data sources in the building, the Cortex Intel platform helps engineers provide the best commands to the building's heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) infrastructure – a significant source of utility costs and energy consumption.
According to Vinny Baffa, who oversees operations at the Woolworth Building, "Cortex Intel is an incredibly simple, easy to use management tool that allows our building operators to optimize daily decision-making based on immediate access to updated and user-friendly building-level data."
"This is what we've been asking for from the market for years now," added Eddie Valdez, Chief Engineer of 277 Park Avenue, where Cortex Intel has been deployed for nearly two years. "Cortex Intel is pulling together system data to provide great feedback about the building through the app, with on-demand information about energy consumption and building performance presented in a format we can use to do our jobs better." Paul Greene, Property Manager at 277 Park Avenue, added that, "Cortex Intel really focused our attention on energy consumption and how we could improve, and of course our ownership and tenants love seeing the monthly utility bills go down. Since the rollout we've realized savings in the neighborhood of $700,000 per year. We've also been extremely impressed with Cortex Intel's customer service, which is always available, and is proactive in helping us get the most from the product."
"Industry adoption of Cortex Intel is accelerating because it produces tangible benefits that building owners, managers, engineers, and tenants can easily see and feel," Bienstock added. "The business proposition is simple and compelling: with limited cost, we can help you operate your building better, make your tenants happier, save you money, increase your asset value, and reduce your environmental impact."
About Savanna Savanna, formed in 1992, is a vertically integrated real estate investment manager and institutional fiduciary based in New York City and focused on strategic property investments throughout the City's five boroughs. The firm, led by Managing Partners Christopher Schlank and Nicholas Bienstock, pursues real estate equity and debt asset investments, including ground-up development and major repositioning projects. Savanna's equity investments target superior risk-adjusted returns by adding value through asset management and/or property development, redevelopment, and repositioning, deploying a team of more than 30 experienced investment, asset management, construction, and leasing professionals. Savanna selectively invests in real estate debt instruments that have the potential to generate equity-like returns, including preferred equity instruments, high yield bridge and mezzanine loans, and B-notes. Since 2006, Savanna has invested over $3 billion in total capital across nearly 14 million square feet of real property.
About Cortex Intel Cortex Intel puts a mobile app in the hands of building engineers, which provides extremely simple charts and operational recommendations, by applying machine learning algorithms to Building Management System and meter data. In doing so, it allows engineers to operate increasingly complex HVAC systems more easily, and with greater precision - giving them better information as they make countless operational decisions every day. As a result, office buildings using Cortex Intel in NYC save $100-800k / year in utilities, adding millions in asset value, and creating a meaningful sustainability impact.