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Juno raises $20M to build more sustainable apartments

Juno, a real estate technology firm aiming to develop more sustainable and cost-effective apartment complexes, has acquired $20 million in a Series A fundraising round.

RET Ventures, Khosla, and Comcast headed the funding. Other participants were Fundamental Ventures, Anim, JLL Spark, etc. The round brought the firm's sum raised to 32 million dollars since its launch in 2019.

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According to Juno's CEO, Jonathan Scherr, the San Francisco-based business wants to build all electrical assets by creating "the first OEM community for ground-up creation." He stated that he and his team treat residential development as product design, a technique they term 'productization.

It's worth noting that Juno's productization resembles the generally used phrase prefabrication in some ways. While prefab construction firm Katerra went bankrupt, a couple of similar firms in the field, notably Abodu and Mighty Buildings, focused on auxiliary housing units and single-family residences, proceeded to raise funds and flourish. Prescient is another company that uses prefabrication to build multifamily houses and hotels.

Juno believes that through "productization," they will develop tools, techniques, and procedures that will result in things like shorter design timeframes, more precise budgeting and scheduling, plus "substantially rapid" construction methods. All of this, according to Scherr, might lead to more cost-friendly housing options for individuals across the country. Juno also boasts that its design process is 60 per cent faster than conventional property development.

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Like other participants in the field, Juno promotes a technology that it claims is considerably more environmentally friendly than standard building techniques. He claimed that building waste is more than twice as much as all municipal waste combined in the United States. The Juno system reduces waste and energy consumption by increasing layout, distribution network, and construction efficiency. The Juno home system is going towards that net-zero goal for CO2 emissions in its multiplex housing units, according to Scherr, because of its emphasis on all-electric buildings in the area that have developed blueprints to clean power generation.

Scherr co-founded Juno together with BJ Siegel, a former Apple Product designer, and Chester Chipperfield, who currently works as a consultant to the firm. Chipperfield formerly worked at Tesla,  Apple, and Burberry. Scherr has served for a range of brands as a startup financier and counselor.

Juno is commencing by constructing the "only nationwide network of mass timber housing units at large with all-electric structures in cities in the U.S.," according to the company.

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It's also collaborating with Ennead Architects and Swinerton to bring its plan into action. The company has already begun construction on its first venture, an apartment complex in East Austin, and now has over 400 apartments under construction. The East Austin structure will open in 2022. Juno is also planning locations in Seattle and Denver.

In the future, the firm intends to use its new funds to improve its platform further, begin work on its first batch of ventures, and interact with more developers.

Sheena Jindal of Comcast Ventures points out that the USA's housing supply is becoming increasingly outdated and scarce, making it harder for consumers to obtain homes. Well, she and her team were struck by the Juno group's approach to construction when they first met them. She stated that Juno could tackle all the multifamily units issues.


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