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CLIMATE CONTROL

This growing startup could end office thermostat wars once and for all

comfy building robotics
Comfy
Hands off the dial.
By Alice Truong
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

In San Francisco, we just open up a window when it’s too hot or cold inside. The rest of the country engages in so-called thermostat wars: Employees fight to control the temperature for their own personal comfort.

This passive-aggressive attitude might not last. Techcrunch reports that a company called Comfy has raised $12 million in a series B financing. The round was led by Emergence Capital with real-estate group CBRE and Microsoft Ventures participating.

Comfy hopes to mediate the thermostat fight by letting people adjust the temperature of carved-out zones from their computers or a mobile app. Over time, the company’s machine learning uses this data to automatically adjust the temperature based on employees’ patterns and preferences, shutting down the HVAC system when no one is around. Contracts from office buildings for technology from the Oakland-based company cover more than 3.5 million square feet.

Comfortable employees translate to harder working employees, since they can focus on work instead of plotting against their fellow cubicle dwellers. “It’s a very real thing that temperature and light can slow us down, distract us, make us hungry or impact our hormones,” Comfy president Lindsay Baker told Techcrunch.

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