The trend toward consolidation and platform development is clear, and there are still opportunities for financial investors to generate value.
FREMONT, CA : Construction players are embracing digital solutions. Several new market entrants provided point solutions that served existing applications or, in some instances, created new ones. The first extensively adopted construction point solutions addressed basic requirements improving design potentials or digitizing paper-based data. By the second half of the decade, leading players started expanding their product portfolios to generate suites of integrated solutions. As the COVID-19 pandemic forces construction players to digitize and leverage technology to ensure the safety of their workers and accelerate productivity, this dynamic will continue to accelerate. There are massive opportunities to create value for both strategic and financial investors that are evaluating consolidation plays.
Top construction firms were already investing heavily in technology prepandemic. By necessity, contractors, architects, engineers, and suppliers have rapidly shifted to working and partnering digitally—from video-call site meetings to filling digital orders. While there is a rapid increase in collaboration technology uptake, the pandemic has also triggered a painful shakeout. Construction tech firms have been forced to lay off employees and cut costs to handle the cash flow. Continued uncertainty on recovery timelines and the risk of virus resurgence could fuel an additional wave of bankruptcies among smaller players, further boosting the trend toward industry consolidation.
The investment trends, combined with end users’ frustration with integrating the proverbial sea of point solutions, have accelerated a clear shift toward developing and releasing integrated platforms rather than point solutions. Firms define platforms as technologies that allow visibility into the management of business or processes through native potentials and seamless integration with other technologies to aggregate data and process control in a single place.
Construction technology is a heavily fragmented, point-solutions-driven market with ample opportunity for integration plays that generate either new platforms or attractive component acquisition targets for evolving incumbent platforms. This fragmentation is more evident when analyzing construction tech solutions across the project life cycle.