The Future of Urbint: How We’re Transforming Gas Infrastructure Safety with AI
The stakes of reliable infrastructure have never been higher. Factors like aging infrastructure, urbanization, drastic changes in weather patterns and workforce turnover mean that gas utilities are being faced with unprecedented complexities. At Urbint, we’re focused on empowering those operators to make more effective decisions in a challenging operating environment using artificial intelligence.
When we walked into our first meeting with a major utility company several years ago, the premise was not what Urbint has become today. What started out as a conversation about data turned into the realization that our technology could actually help solve the biggest, most complex challenges facing utilities today.
Flash forward to 2019. With over 80% of Americans living in urban areas and the cost of infrastructure replacement climbing toward over $4.5 trillion by 2025, the tough calls operators have to make every day on issues like methane leak inspections, damage prevention, and pipe replacement prioritization affect millions of citizens.
Balancing risk mitigation and resource allocation in a changing world has never been more important in building and maintaining resiliency in our communities. It became clear to us early on in our journey that AI was the only way to meet both existing challenges as well as ones never seen before because it has the power to identify these patterns of events and factors that have historically been difficult to account for.
Our investors agreed with Urbint’s mission of making communities safer and more resilient through AI, and capitalized the business with $18.5 million in funding from investors including Energy Impact Partners, Urban US, Fifth Wall, and a handful of strategic angel investors. These firms not only share Urbint’s vision for safer, more resilient communities, they also specialize in our space: shaping the energy landscape of the future, bringing technology to the built world, and reimagining how communities can thrive.
With this capital and proven success enabling some of the largest gas utility companies in the world to maximize risk reduction for every dollar spent, we’re continuing to scale. The addition of Amen Ra Mashariki as Head of Urban Intelligence and a fast-expanding best-in-class team, along with the addition of new gas utility partners, means that our headquarters in New York City is becoming the center point of an evolution in infrastructure safety and resiliency. We’ve started in the gas sector and will expand in the near future into other areas such as electric and municipalities.
Despite the unprecedented challenges facing communities around the globe today, our outlook is positive. We know that the challenges of aging infrastructure can’t be solved with aging technology, and we’re focused on building solutions that solve these problems in new ways — delivering cutting-edge technology to infrastructure operators and utilities without disrupting the established workflow, enabling them to deploy the right intervention at the right time in the right place.
We believe that the technology, team and vision we’re building at Urbint today will be the foundation of a new way of thinking about infrastructure — one that prepares us for the kind of complexities and challenges we may not even be able to imagine today. Anticipating the future is exactly what we’re working to do, and the greatest proof of our success will be safer, more resilient communities supported by the most reliable infrastructure possible.