4 years ago, Alert Labs founders Ruth Casselman, George Tsintzouras, and Kevin Wright began building Alert Labs with the goal of creating innovative solutions for home monitoring which were easy to install, affordable and provided value to home owners and property managers. Since then, the company as experienced rapid growth, receiving funding from GTAN, AC JumpStart and additional VC rounds – quickly becoming one of the region’s fastest growing IoT companies.
Well Aligned Partnership
The relationship with Watsco started when several advisers and investors recommended the team connect with representatives from Watsco Ventures. “There is a lot of alignment between our organizations,” explains Casselman. “We were looking for investors and they were looking for hardware and IoT experts to work on a new project. It was a great match.”
Both organizations recognize the incredible opportunity presented by their partnership and share a commitment to innovation and to helping property managers and home owners reduce the risk of damage to their homes.
“Alert Labs is an exceptional team of innovators, with an entrepreneurial culture that is consistent and complementary to ours. This acquisition represents the next phase of investing in ground-breaking technologies intended to deliver unique solutions and opportunities to our customers.” – A.J. Nahmad, President of Watsco, Inc.
“This partnership brings together Alert Labs’ technical experts in commercial IoT technology with Watsco’s channel of HVAC contractors. Our easy-to-install technology expands Watsco’s product offerings and establishes a strong position in the smart-home space. Our vision has always been to help homeowners reduce wasted costs and avoid property damage by giving them valuable, real-time information about what is costing them money in their homes. This partnership with Watsco advances our vision into reality.” – George, Tsintzouras, CEO of Alert Labs
Soon after meeting, Watsco Ventures invested in Alert Labs and they began co-developing the next product in Alert’s suite of easy to use, affordable home monitoring devices, an A/C monitoring system named Sentree.
Like their flagship devices for water monitoring (Flowie and Floodie), Sentree takes 10 minutes to install and allows for remote monitoring of air conditioner systems from anywhere in the world. “Just like heating units are essential in Canadian climates, maintaining operational AC units is critical in warmer climates,” says Casselman. “HVAC service providers, property managers, and homeowners can have peace of mind knowing the air conditioner is operating normally, and that Sentree will alert them if there are potential problems.”
As with other Alert Labs sensors, Sentree uses a cellular network and does not require a separate data plan agreement, on-site internet, or WiFi connection. The Dashboard, for computer and mobile devices, provides service teams with access to detailed data and analytics about air conditioner performance. Homeowners can see that their air conditioner unit is online and operating, and have comfort knowing that should something unusual happen, their service provider will be notified by the Sentree system.
What’s Next For Alert Labs.
Alert Labs will continue to operate out of their Kitchener location and continue to have their eye on growth. “We are moving forward with the same product roadmap and the same team we’ve built here in Kitchener-Waterloo, with the added benefit of the network and expertise of our partners at Watsco.” say Casselman. “We are very lucky to live in a community where there’s a lot of support for startups and we are grateful for that support. We are looking forward to growing here and hoping to give back to the community as well.”
This fall, Alert Labs plans to launch another new offering, Sumpie, the world’s first predictive sump pump sensor.