USA: Daikin Comfort Technologies, the Japanese air conditioning manufacturer’s North American unitary, ductless and light commercial and VRV products subsidiary, has acquired US controls manufacturer Venstar Inc.

Founded in 1992 and based in Southern California, Venstar is a prominent controls and energy management systems provider whose technology and indoor comfort solutions are used in millions of residences and light commercial applications across the United States, Canada and Mexico. More than 10 million of the company’s broad range of thermostats have been installed.

The company’s Surveyor energy management system allows retailers, restaurant chains and other multi-location businesses to remotely monitor, manage and control energy consumption while reducing maintenance expenses. It is currently used to control more than 100,000 HVAC systems and building lighting in more than 30,000 retail locations throughout North America.

In addition, Venstar’s Skyport Cloud service enables businesses to control their HVAC systems from anywhere in the world.

Following the acquisition, Venstar will continue as a Daikin subsidiary under its existing management team with Steve Dushane, founder, president and CEO.

“Venstar’s advanced smart thermostats, controls technology and outstanding energy management systems will help support Daikin’s leadership role in connected solutions, ensuring safe, environmentally friendly, peak performance operations of HVAC systems through cloud-connected monitoring and control,” said Takayuki Inoue, Daikin’s executive vice president and chief sales and marketing officer.

“We are committed to facilitating North America wide adoption of energy-efficient inverter, heat pump and R32-based systems. These Daikin systems provide superior environmental benefits, energy savings and indoor comfort performance over traditional HVAC systems that currently cool and heat most North American homes and businesses,” he added.

“Venstar’s energy management expertise and smart, communicating controllers will help contractors, homeowners and businesses optimize the energy-saving and performance benefits of inverter-driven HVAC systems,” insisted Daikin’s vice president of controls and solutions Dennis Thoren.

“Smart thermostat and cloud service solutions represent the future of indoor comfort beyond controlling temperature and ventilation,” said Thoren. “Monitoring and controlling performance, indoor air quality, predictive maintenance, and optimising service truck logistics are just a few of the benefits that innovative thermostats and cloud-based services can provide contractors and customers. It’s an effective, easy way to manage energy consumption remotely, even eventually collaborating with electric utilities to improve demand response. These are powerful benefits that provide value to utilities, contractors and customers.”

The acquisition is one of several Daikin has completed during the past few years as it works to transform the North American HVAC industry. The $500m Daikin Texas Technology Park, located just northwest of Houston, now employs more than 7,000 people.