Air conditioning manufacturer Daikin is to invest approximately US$2m in Silicon Valley-based startup Locix, a company specialising in cloud-based spatial intelligence solutions.

Based in San Bruno, California, Locix employs spatial intelligence solutions that use a combination of indoor positioning technology, advanced AI, and Wi-Fi to acquire and analyze location, as well as spatial and visual data, to enable actionable insights. The data is subsequently employed in automated decision making for critical services. These services include asset management at distribution warehouses and factories, operational efficiency based on the movement of workers, and occupancy monitoring for the advancement of smart buildings.

Locix LPS is described as a full-stack solution for highly accurate location determination of WiFi enabled devices such as, asset trackers, mobile phones, IoT sensors, appliances, and equipment, with sub-meter accuracy in indoor and outdoor environments

At the end of last year, Daikin established a corporate venture capital department to promote collaboration with startup companies and announced it had set aside $100m for supporting investments over the next five years. The amount being allocated to Locix represents Daikin’s first investment in a company outside Japan.

Daikin aims to reduce labour hours at installation sites by utilising Locix’s local positioning technology, Locix LPS. The Locix LPS solution will configure and confirm positioning information of indoor air conditioning units and automate remote monitoring services that were previously performed manually. In addition, by detecting and analysing the presence and movement of people and assets in an office building, Daikin expects to see a solutions business for office spaces emerge.