Butlr lands new cash to put people-detecting sensors in the office

By Kyle Wiggers

Butlr, an MIT Media Lab spinout developing sensors that use body heat to estimate office occupancy, today announced that it raised $20 million in a Series A round with participation from Carrier Global Corporation (a strategic investor), Tiger Global, Primetime Partners, E14, Unionlabs, Hyperplane and Tectonic Ventures. Co-founder and CEO Honghao Deng said that the proceeds will support product development and expanding Butlr’s 50-person workforce, specifically its go-to-market team.

Deng asserts that many companies are flying blind when it comes to real estate. While they added heads during the pandemic, they now face economic headwinds that could — or already have — prompted hiring freezes and layoffs. With the lack of clarity on whether they should lease more space, reduce their footprint, use co-working spaces or all of the above, Deng said, it’s resulting in paused construction and office redesigns as companies figure how to accommodate employees’ needs while cutting costs.

According to a March AT&T poll, 72% of businesses lack clear hybrid work strategy.

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