German engineers turned entrepreneurs Christian Deilmann and Johannes Schwarz felt compelled to found tado° GmbH in 2011 for one main reason – because heating and cooling systems in one billion buildings around the globe consume roughly one-third of the world’s energy. With the help of CEO Toon Bouten, the duo is fixing this problem, tackling climate change,
and reducing energy costs for everyone.
Today, Munich-based tado° develops technology, services, and products to efficiently control and manage energy use at home. Its designs are simple, elegant, and intuitive. The company also offers sophisticated solutions for large utilities, including software services for energy and insulation management. Driving Deilmann and Schwarz’s green revolution is CEO Toon Bouten, a Dutchman with huge experience in tech.
“Heating and cooling drive energy consumption, much more than cars and airplanes, and this usage is spiking, with another 500 million homes set to be heated or cooled in the next decade,” he says. “tado° wants to save energy and halt global warming.” Before taking up his current role in 2017, Toon was the president, CEO, and co-founder of Jobline, a company which he eventually sold to global employment big hitter Monster. He says his mission today is to “make tado° grow incredibly quickly.” So far, he’s doing a pretty good job.
To optimise energy consumption tado° has overhauled old-fashioned climate control technology by developing innovative hardware, services, and apps for heating and air conditioning at home. The company’s products are 100% designed in its Munich headquarters, the hub for product development, marketing, sales, and support. From there these products and services are delivered to their customers via globally operating sales channels.
“By offering our products and services, we have access to a vast amount of information, which is used to provide analysis and information about heating/cooling systems for our customers – and ultimately to help them save both energy and money,” he explains. “We adapted our strategy in 2017 to make sure we are incredibly customer-focused, largely helped by successful cooperation with Vtech, a Chinese company we work with on manufacturing and refurbishment. As a result, tado° has reduced its prices by up to 40% over the last two years to enable more affordable intelligent home climate solutions for consumers. We also set up a supply chain organisation within Vtech and it now boasts a 98% supply reliability.”
What’s more, tado° evolved into a logistics provider after signing with Arvato Bertelsmann GmbH, the German supply chain solutions giant. This cooperation has boosted the company’s presence in Hong Kong and Europe.
There are multiple advantages to installing one of the company’s systems at home. Users are able to adjust the temperature in any room from anywhere via a special phone app, while also accessing each thermostat. Whenever the system notices the last person has left the house or a window has been opened, the user will receive a notification to toggle the setting for the heating. With auto-assist, the geolocation and open-window-detection are automated, letting tado° take care of the heating. It’s hi-tech stuff!
Toon says that from a cost perspective, having a good relationship with suppliers is essential for his organisation, while all ties it forges are built on mutual trust. He believes that the company’s “deeply integrated heating and cooling ecosystems” and green ethos sets it apart from its competitors. The plan is to transform from a hardware-focused company into more of a software and data business – a plan of action that’s
“There are multiple advantages to installing one of tado°’s systems at “home
already well underway. But even though things are going well, there are still serious obstacles to overcome: “We need to continuously adapt our financial business plan to progress and one of our biggest challenges is maintaining scalability – this is always at the heart of the decisions we make.”
The company takes pride in its operational excellence and is currently focusing on fostering development solutions for its B2B customers. This includes developing customer support and working with outsourcing partners. All of this is done with the aim of ensuring consumer satisfaction across the entire value chain or as Toon puts it, “making it sure that tado° improves every part of the customer journey.”
One example of the company’s commitment to improving the way people live is another new app feature, which analyses air quality at home. Users are able to track what kind of pollutants and pollen are in the air they’re breathing so they can get actionable advice on when to ventilate their home or keep the windows closed.
“Pollution and air quality in and outside the home have become a global concern as the health effects of poor air are more widely known. Over 90% of the world’s population lives with toxic air, which has led the World Health Organisation (WHO) to declare the issue a global ‘public health emergency,’” the company stated. “Giving real-time and predictive data as well as insights on air quality can help people reduce the bad air that they are breathing. tado° users will see the air quality index (AQI) score outside their home and can use the information to act upon. Want to know what’s in the air you are breathing? No problem, we reveal the most significant pollutants in your environment. Moreover, tado° presents pollen forecasts on grasses, weeds, and trees to help residents manage their day.”
Helping other companies that are also fighting global warming is another of Toon’s responsibilities: “We focus on large utilities, HVAC installation, and insulation companies by delivering hardware, software, and services as an integral part of their solutions for energy, maintenance, and heating services. By doing this we increase efficiency and volume and decrease costs. It’s an important part of my role.”
If we are going to tackle the climate crisis successfully, we all need to pull in the same direction and positive action can start right from the home. By installing efficient heating and systems that save both energy and money, each of us can make a difference. The progressive and ecological thinking of companies like tado° is paving the way for a cleaner future.
“tado° presents pollen forecasts on grasses, weeds, and trees to help people “manage their day