Real Innovation Awards winner sells company for £681 million

PlanGrid’s Tracy Young had just picked up a Real Innovation Award

Tracy Young PlanGrid 2

Real Innovation Awards (RIA) winner PlanGrid is to be sold for US$875 million (£681 million). 

Co-founder and CEO Tracy Young had missed the RIA award ceremony, organised by the Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, in November, as she was finalising the deal with the California-based multinational software corporation, Autodesk.

Young had won in The Harnessing the Winds of Change category for her clever use of iPad technology to streamline onsite construction collaboration and planning. Her app gives builders real-time access to project plans, project tasks, progress photos, daily field reports, submittals and more. Autodesk makes software for the architecture, engineering, construction, manufacturing, media and entertainment industries.

“As designing and making converge, Autodesk is connecting project data from design through construction and putting predictive insights into the hands of contractors,” said Andrew Anagnost, Autodesk CEO.

“There is a huge opportunity to streamline all aspects of construction through digitisation and automation. The acquisition of PlanGrid will accelerate our efforts to improve construction workflows for every stakeholder in the construction process.”

Commenting on the deal, Young said: “At PlanGrid, we have a relentless focus on empowering construction workers to build as productively as possible. One of the first steps to improving construction productivity is the adoption of digital workflows with centralised data. PlanGrid has excelled at building beautiful, simple field collaboration software, while Autodesk has focused on connecting design to construction. Together, we can drive greater productivity and predictability on the jobsite.”

Jim Lynch, Construction General Manager at Autodesk, said: “This acquisition allows us to do more for general contractors, and we’ve got new growth opportunities with subcontractors and owners. We’ll integrate workflows between PlanGrid’s software and both Autodesk Revit software and the Autodesk BIM 360 construction management platform, for a seamless exchange of information between all project members.”

The acquisition is expected to expand Autodesk’s app ecosystem, giving customers a customisable platform to test and scale new ways of working. Autodesk expects the deal to add $100 million (£85.6 million) to its annual revenue.