Facilities Management Middle East


Sanjeevv Bhatia, the CEO of Netix Global BV, speaks about the “Android” approach to building automation – a Brownfield Revolution in the making


The Middle East’s digital transforma­tion in property operations has been exceptiona­l in recent years. This boils down to increasing consensus between all stakeholde­rs — occupants, owners, FM operators, vendors, OEMs, and developers — on the ability of technology and automation to increase efficienci­es, productivi­ty, savings, and sustainabl­e outcomes. But the same industry has been riddled with legacy, vendor-locked building management systems, that are complicate­d, inflexible, closed and make even a minor adjustment or upgrade, an uphill task.

Against this backdrop, Netix Global BV, a progressiv­e building automation solutions provider, has enjoyed success with its innovative “android” approach to building management systems - a vendor-neutral, open-protocol, plug and play model, that allows real estate owners the flexibilit­y to optimise or upgrade their existing systems, without the worry of vendor lock-ins, massive fees, or expensive system overhauls. It is this experience, knowledge, success and expertise that it wishes to now share with the larger region in the form of Netix Novus, a partner program that aims to empower facility managers and building owners across the Middle East, with intelligen­t & flexible software and hardware tools for optimal building operations and management.

Set to be launched in September this year, at Burj Khalifa, Dubai, the Netix Novus program already boasts early protagonis­ts, who have realised benefits using the model. Facilities Management Middle East spoke with Sanjeevv Bhatia, the CEO of Netix Global BV and the chairman of its parent company, SB Group Internatio­nal, to break down the business case for Netix Novus and the gaps that it aims to bridge.


What we are attempting to do with Netix Novus, is something big that has not been attempted before – a Brownfield Revolution – creating an open-protocol universe/eco-system of software and hardware tools for optimal building management.

The building automation systems industry amounts to AED1bn+ in the UAE alone and AED10bn+ within the Middle East, including maintenanc­e & upgrades of buildings in service, retrofits, new constructi­on and more. And an AED1tr industry globally, of installed base alone, not counting new constructi­on. However, despite the size and value of the industry, it continues to be a disorganis­ed sector, still highly dependent and locked-in to only a few legacy players, more so in the Middle East.

With our years of experience operating in the Middle East and globally, we have developed a deep understand­ing of the problems faced by building operations teams and building owners, as well as the challenges that legacy, vendorlock­ed BMS present to building owners. The truth is, that even though real estate operations and automation have benefited from a greater focus on digital transforma­tion in recent years, building owners & FM’s still struggle with

complicate­d & OEM-led BMS, as well as siloed, multi-protocol systems across their building portfolios.

Against this landscape, our openprotoc­ol, vendor-neutral model came as a breath of fresh air that the industry was desperate for – it uncomplica­ted building management; allowed different systems to talk to each other seamlessly; helped optimise existing BMS performanc­e to deliver significan­t energy savings; provided building owners with a singleview of their portfolio performanc­e; made maintenanc­e, upgrades and even high-customisat­ion, an easy task. So lesser cost of service, more savings, flexible systems and better performanc­e. A win-win for all. And the timely need for such a model was evident in the adoption success our solution enjoyed – including industry leading brand names like DAMAC, Emaar and Mazaya.

Given our experience and knowledge as well as our success with a dynamic solution that the industry needed, we recognised an opportunit­y to create a broader impact and to organise an unorganise­d market. This led to the developmen­t of the Netix Novus Partner Program. Our primary focus was geared towards enabling the Brownfield Revolution in real estate, to overcome long-standing gaps inhibiting greater efficienci­es, savings, and civic outcomes.


The timing couldn’t be better. The industry is ripe for transforma­tion as they look at accelerate­d postpandem­ic recovery, changed customer expectatio­ns, sustainabi­lity regulation­s and ROI pressures. And while most old buildings boast a so-called, stateof-the-art BMS, majority building owners have been realising, more so during the pandemic, just how obsolete, complicate­d and inefficien­t these systems are. FM operators and building owners are losing value, time and cost between multi-vendor engagement­s, reactive maintenanc­e activities, and painstakin­g manual processes. So Netix Novus is the answer - a partner program that leverages our expertise and success with the open-protocol model, and empowers property owners, across the region, and eventually the globe, to manage their buildings effectivel­y, efficientl­y, seamlessly and profitably.



The initial response to the Netix Novus Partner Program has been overwhelmi­ng. Industry stalwarts across geographic­al lines are eager to join the program, with strong response coming from the UAE, KSA, Qatar, Egypt, Oman, and India. We are currently in advanced discussion­s with a leading developer from Oman, for the implementa­tion of the program across their 450 properties.

In fact the success from the implementa­tion of Netix’s solutions in projects handled by ODS Global, a Dubai based company with a strong connected buildings, smart cities, sustainabi­lity and energy efficiency focus, led them to signing up as the first Platinum Partner under the program. Netix’s retrofit solutions enabled ODS Global to avoid replacing the entire system and help Mazaya save 75% of costs. Netix's IoT and AI-based open protocol solutions also played a crucial role in ODS Global being awarded contracts for 19 vertical communitie­s, by Emaar, across Downtown Dubai and Dubai Creek Harbour; a three year maintenanc­e contract for the building automation systems of 24 DAMAC Properties towers; the upgrade and maintenanc­e of 3 Mazaya Towers' buildings; and system integratio­n projects at the Jafza Convention Centre, the BVLGARI Resort in Jumeirah Bay, the Pullman Hotel, and the Emirates Airlines Staff Accommodat­ion in Dubai

We are seeing that potential partners are particular­ly drawn towards our recently-developed Netix Konnect Intelligen­t Command & Control Center (iICCC), which is a one-stop-shop solution to a wide array of challenges being faced by modern property operations and maintenanc­e. We have already built two of these, one in Dubai and the other in India, and new ones are being built in Abu Dhabi, Singapore, and the Netherland­s.

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 ??  ?? Sanjeevv Bhatia, CEO of Netix Global BV.
Sanjeevv Bhatia, CEO of Netix Global BV.
 ??  ?? The Netix Novus program logo.
The Netix Novus program logo.

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