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Source : Hensel Phelps
May 18, 2023
Author : Bidhanee Islam
Hensel Phelps is a well-known building equipment contractor and construction management firm in the United States. General contracting, construction management, design-build, and preconstruction consulting are among the services offered by the company.
Well-known for its ability to deliver complex projects such as airports, hospitals, sports stadiums, and infrastructure, Hensel Phelps employs over 3,000 people and has completed projects in over 25 states across the United States.
At the beginning of this year, they announced the launch of Diverge, an investment firm focused on constructing innovation and technology. Diverge is a new division of Hensel Phelps that sources, evaluates, invests in, and deploys innovative construction innovations in collaboration with innovation partners and technology firms.
Emerging ConTech construction methods and technologies have the potential to change the building process. Small startup technologies are constantly pushing forward, making complex processes more intuitive with simple systems that improve communication and efficiency in construction. Diverge allows Hensel Phelps to interact with these technological companies and contribute to the development of innovative solutions.
"Over the past decade, we have seen continual advancement in prefabrication, robotics, drones, and many other technology platforms that are having a profound impact on how we deliver projects. Diverge provides Hensel Phelps a structured approach to evaluate and implement innovation in our business," said Brad Jeanneret, executive vice president. He added, "We are investing in the future of our industry."
By investing in these businesses and their products in the early stages of development, Hensel Phelps can positively influence construction technology, resulting in success for both firms and the AEC sector. Technology firms that collaborate with Hensel Phelps gain equally by capitalizing on the breadth of Hensel Phelps' business and allowing their technologies to be tested in real-world circumstances and reviewed directly by the intended audience—the construction professional.
The construction industry is being significantly disrupted by digital technology, robotics integration, prefabrication solutions, and many other cutting-edge ideas. The second least digitized industry overall is the US construction sector, worth $1.6 trillion. Hensel Phelps uses its people, systems, and alliances as an innovation catalyst.
Thai Nguyen, innovation leader at Hensel Phelps, was eager to formalize an already successful program after spending his tenure there working alongside construction technology startups.
"For over a decade, we have been partnering with early startups and strategic partners with much success. The unique journeys, transparency, symbiotic relationships and invaluable insights have been consistent pillars, allowing Hensel Phelps to push the boundaries of innovation," said Thai. “Culturally, we no longer have to pull our people towards innovation and technology. Instead, our everyday innovators are pushing and not settling for the status quo.”
The team at Diverge and its expanding network of partners are concentrated on finding and assessing solutions that have the potential to revolutionize and advance the way that the sector plans, develops, and manages construction projects. Diverge, which is now accepting new submissions for evaluation, encourages innovators in the construction industry to pitch their game-changing concepts.