Remember the wireless sensor network “wars” from ten years ago, or so? Harry Sim left Honeywell Process to head up a new endeavor of Cypress Semiconductor to exploit these networks in a variety of different environments. I told him at the time that I thought he had a good chance for success.

Yesterday he wrote to me with an update. I thought I’d share it–partly as a positive example for you budding entrepreneurs out there.


New York City: If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere!    For our company, there is a lot of truth to that phrase, since Cypress Envirosystems technology retrofits existing buildings – and New York has more buildings than any other US city.

Back in 2012, we eyed NYC from our perch in Silicon Valley…it is the largest city with the densest concentration of existing buildings, with perhaps the fiercest business competition.  As the CEO of our startup company, I had a personal goal to build a strong business there  – just to prove that we have what it takes to win in the toughest market.

Now, five years later, we have completed the upgrade of over 50 buildings in New York City, including schools, hospitals, universities, office buildings, and courthouses.  These include iconic structures such as the majestic courthouses at Civic Center, the 65 story Deutsche Bank headquarters on Wall Street, the venerable CUNY campus in Lower Manhattan, Kings County Hospital, and K-12 schools in all five boroughs.  In addition, our WPT technology is deployed at 3.5 million square feet at the Weiss and Javits Federal buildings, the tallest government buildings in the US, housing the Department of Homeland Security, FBI, Social Security, Customs and Immigration, General Services Administration and other agencies.

And our pace is accelerating.  In the next six months, another 31 buildings are already planned for upgrade.   The NYC government has independently tested and vetted our WPT technology – and it is now included in municipal retrofit specifications (see press release from New York City DCAS Commissioner Lisett Camillo here).

Cypress Envirosystems’ solutions use patented non-invasive technologies to make existing buildings smarter, more comfortable, and more efficient with a minimum of cost and disruption (these days, it is called the Internet of Things – see MSN/Tech Republic interview here).   I now have the satisfaction to know that we can make it in New York, and we play an important role to help this world class city become more efficient and sustainable.

Despite our progress however, we have barely scratched the surface of what can be done.  New York City alone has over 4,000 municipal buildings, and another ten times that many in the private sector.  Not to mention Chicago, LA, Philadelphia with similar building stock.  The majority of them will benefit from the same unique technologies we have already deployed over the past five years – but our challenge will be to do 100 times more, and faster, over the next five years.  The exciting journey continues for us…thank you for taking this moment to allow me to share our story with you.

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