Czech Sharry transforms buildings into technological gems. The company has successfully expanded to Manhattan
Sharry offers a smart platform for modern buildings that is able to interconnect several digital systems and makes it possible to manage parking, building access and the use of meeting rooms from one place. With CzechInvest, representatives of the startup travelled several times to New York, where they gained new business contacts and feedback on their product.
Today, office and residential buildings strive to offer above-standard services. The startup Sharry is targeting those buildings. Sharry is a proptech company, meaning it combines property with technology.
When the company was established in 2015, it was one of the first proptech firms in Europe. Today there are dozens of such companies around the world, though each of them focuses on a different type of software. None of them combines products quite like Sharry does.
“Our offer of four products, i.e. access via mobile telephone, smart parking, visitor management and a community application, is quite unique, while making perfect sense. All functions are interconnected in a single user experience, such as when you enter a building,” says Josef Šachta, CEO and co-founder of Sharry, adding: “It’s up to the customers which products they choose. Of course, they can combine them, which means that, for example, a single platform can be used to call an elevator, find out exactly where to park and manage the operation of the building’s shared spaces.”
Sharry has already managed to integrate a total of 32 digital systems into buildings. Thanks to that, it ranks among the world’s most advanced proptech companies. Sharry’s platform is currently being used in 13 cities on three continents.
The company shares its unique know-how and experience within the international Friendly Buildings conference, which it organises. The startup also works closely with Skanska through the Connected by Skanska project, whose systems can be found in buildings in Prague, Warsaw, Bucharest, Budapest, Krakow and Boston. And in 2019, Sharry received a seed investment, i.e. an investment in the company’s launch, from PRESTO Ventures in the value of tens of millions of korunas.
Sharry & CzechInvest
Sharry has had global ambitions since the beginning. In 2018, the company’s representatives were considering expanding to the American market and they were enticed by CzechInvest’s CzechAccelerator programme, which offers a three-month stay in New York. They successfully underwent the selection process and flew to the other side of the globe in January 2019.
During their time at the VentureOut accelerator in New York, they used services relating to business development, business strategy and marketing. They gained numerous business, legal and other contacts, thanks to which they succeeded in getting established on the American market. They also focused on the legal framework for establishing a branch in the United States and began dealing with projects in Manhattan. “So that we could continue to meet with potential clients and business partners, we repeatedly travelled to New York every month. We also used other CzechInvest programmes, namely CzechMatch and CzechDemo, which ensured our participation in the TechDay conference, for example,” Šachta explains.
“In New York, we wanted to work on practically anything, even a small house in Queens, but in the end our first project was the completely new One Vanderbilt skyscraper, which is the second tallest office building in Manhattan and the fifth tallest building in the United States. It took us almost a year to get that first order, but thanks to the support from CzechInvest, which got us to New York, we managed it,” says Šachta. One Vanderbilt is a new-generation high-rise building that is intended to serve as a prototype for 21st-century luxury offices. Sharry is responsible for some of its technological gadgets, such as contactless opening of elevator doors using only a mobile telephone. Sharry immediately followed up this order with another success and will also be involved in 22 high-rise buildings in New York that belong to SL Green, the biggest property developer in Manhattan.
„In New York, we wanted to work on practically anything, even a small house in Queens, but in the end our first project was the completely new One Vanderbilt skyscraper, which is the second tallest office building in Manhattan.” (Josef Šachta, CEO & co-founder Sharry)