In a bold move towards modernizing the property management industry, a pioneering robotics company, Korean startup Robo Vertical, has set its sights on transforming the skyscraper window cleaning. This innovative venture aims to bring automation to an industry notorious for its challenges and risks.
Skyscraper window cleaning, often described as a “quintessential 3D industry,” is characterized by its high risk, dirtiness, and labor-intensive nature. The current market relies entirely on human labor, putting workers’ lives at risk daily. Robo Vertical identifies these issues as opportunities for change.
A Client-Centric Approach to Commercialization
The company’s primary focus is on delivering solutions to skyscraper owners and building maintenance teams, particularly facility managers. These professionals face the high costs and challenges of manual window cleaning and are eager for more efficient and safer alternatives.
Robo Vertical recognizes that the most significant pain point in this industry is the high cost associated with labor-based cleaning services. Their solution aims to reduce service expenses while delivering cleaning services faster than the traditional methods.
Currently, Robo Vertical’s focus is on developing a fully automated cleaning service, with the potential to revolutionize skyscraper maintenance.
At present, Robo Vertical is in the early stages of research and development, with a domestic market focus. They estimate the Korean domestic market for robotic window cleaning to be around $300 million, signalling substantial growth potential. Globally, approximately 1~2% of the market is already captured by robotic cleaners, indicating a growing acceptance of automated solutions.
Rather than solely pursuing technological advancements, Robo Vertical’s strategy emphasizes direct service provision to building owners, bypassing the need to convince manual cleaners to adopt their technology. Safety remains their top priority, a crucial aspect in an industry known for its risks.
Market Entry and Product Focus
Robo Vertical intends to enter the market with a gondola-mounted robot designed with safety in mind. They will initially target clients with clear obstacles and flexible needs in their curtain wall cleaning.
Their business model is straightforward: they offer a direct cleaning service to maintenance teams and receive service fees in return. Initial efforts will focus on establishing a landmark case in the domestic market, followed by expansion within Korea. Global expansion is projected to begin in approximately two years.
Leading the charge is Jay Lee, who is responsible for shaping the company’s business strategy. The team also includes dedicated engineers who have been diligently developing the robotic window washing machine. Robo Vertical’s ambitious endeavor promises to revolutionize the property management industry, starting with skyscraper window cleaning.
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