Uponor may not be a household name in North America, but the billion dollar Finnish manufacturer of under floor heating systems is growing steadily here. Upscale homeowners in cold places like Finland or Minnesota, where Uponor’s North American division is located, appreciate the comfortable radiant heat their systems provide. As a high-end building supplier, it’s natural that Uponor would also offer the latest web-based controls for their home heating systems. They were working on this technology when Coherent Solutions first met with Uponor’s IT group in Minnesota.
Uponor’s Climate Control Network (CCN) was conceived as a way for homeowners to adjust their homes’ temperature remotely. An owner could go on the web and turn the temperature up or down before coming home from work, for instance. Or a cabin’s system could be managed from home.
“We had built a proof-of-concept to test this product with our customers,” explained Chris Moore, VP of Information Technology for Uponor/North America. “We wanted to see how well it would be received.”
In fact, the CCN had immediate success and Moore’s group was soon working on a burning platform that could only handle a few hundred customer controls due to a dependency on inflexible third party technology. They needed a more robust, scalable system and they had two imperatives:
- Given the development budget, the work would have to be by a partner with global delivery capabilities, and;
- The CCN had to be ready for release in just nine months.
Moore spoke with several suppliers that had overseas operations, but was most impressed with Coherent’s practical, phased approach and Eastern European operation.