£750,000 raise for Hull prop-tech firm behind high rise Building Safety Act compliance platform

A Hull tech business that helps owners of high-rise buildings to meet strict new safety rules has secured further major funding.

Bimense’s platform helps companies comply with the Building Safety Act, which aims to improve safety in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster. It is being introduced in phases since coming into law last year. A £750,000 injection from NPIF – Mercia Equity Finance will enable the company to add new features to its Operance platform in response to the latest measures.

The business was founded seven years ago by Ian Yeo and Scott Pilgrim, specialists in building information modelling. Launching in 2020, then with NPIF – Mercia Equity Finance backing, the latest round – the third to date – brings the total received to almost £2 million.

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Scott Pilgrim, chief product officer at Bimsense, said: “We are excited to secure this additional funding which supports our mission to manage the world’s building information and create safe, harmonious places for everyone. Our Operance platform has been at the forefront of innovation, helping companies meet the requirements of the new building safety regime efficiently. This funding will enable us to take it to the next level.”

Operance is now used by housing authorities such as Campden, Basildon and Harrow and construction firms including Kier, Higgins, United Living, Vermont and Rider Levett Bucknall. Bimsense increased turnover by 44 per cent in the financial year ending in August. The company, which currently employs 22 staff, expects to create six new jobs in the year ahead.

A demonstration of Operance in use.
Operance in use.

Maurice Disasi, investment manager at Mercia, said: “The Building Safety Act will bring about major changes in the construction and property industry and will drive uptake of digital technology. Operance is the first platform that has been specifically designed to help firms meet the requirements of the Act. This latest funding will enable the company to add new features and expand its presence in an industry that is ripe for change.”

Since October 1, owners of higher risk buildings – a classification covering 13,000 properties – have had to produce a safety case report to show how risks – having previously been assessed – will be managed. Next April further provisions on the collection of building information come in.

Debbie Sorby, senior manager at British Business Bank, the organisation behind the ERDF-backed Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, which is managed by Mercia, said: “Bimsense is an excellent example of a company working to ensure that modern technologies exist to help make industries more efficient, especially where keeping on top of regulations is key. I look forward to seeing the team grow as Bimsense continues to set an example for the wider construction industry.”

Original artice – https://business-live.co.uk/all-about/yorkshire-humber

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