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26 November 2018

Mott MacDonald Digital Ventures marries tech start-ups with engineering, management and development knowhow

Mott MacDonald has launched a new business, Mott MacDonald Digital Ventures, that will combine the creativity of tech start-ups with its engineering, management and development knowhow.

It is bringing cutting-edge digital technologies to real challenges, with the aim of achieving radically better performance and value in the face of increasing cost, resource, social and climate pressures. The new business will work across the consultancy and development businesses, bringing new benefits to its clients and the public.

Asset owners, cities and government agencies face issues of such scale and complexity that it can be difficult to fully understand the various challenges and make investment and management decisions needed to deliver enduring value. They know that there is much potential in digital transformation but need to spend money wisely.

Digital start-ups are a huge source of value in addressing these challenges, with innovative thinking and enthusiasm to deploy their skills to help deliver enhanced social, environmental and economic results.

Mott MacDonald Digital Ventures seeks to be the connection between that digital potential and those client needs, using Mott MacDonald’s multisector expertise and creating an ecosystem of forward-thinking businesses that can meet these challenges.

Growth will be achieved through business ventures with external partners, from new start-ups to well-known technology giants, and by accelerating digitally innovative start-ups created within Mott MacDonald. A seed funding budget will support a selection of new ventures through their early development and commercial launch. All investments will be appraised for their potential to deliver enhanced against economic, social or environmental outcomes.

The first tranches of investment are internal. Its first business has launched a cloud-based platform that combines data analytics and visualisation to optimise asset performance, enhance capacity and enable better focused investment and maintenance activities. Its second digital business will specialise in bringing efficiency into design and construction through data-centric integration, standard process and automation.

Darren Russell, founder of Mott MacDonald Digital Ventures said: “We’re providing connectivity and real funding to support and accelerate the development of ideas and skills that can improve efficiency for the benefit of our clients, our partners and our own business. We have already developed two internal businesses to market-readiness, and we’re working with others on new products.”

“It’s an unusual proposition in our sector, more akin to venture capital than conventional business development. Not every idea will fly, but some will be transformative and will help propel our business forward,” Darren added.

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