construction tech

Houston construction business launches analytics tool to predict building outcomes

Satterfield & Pontikes Construction has launched Prolégo to provide predictive analytics to its clients. Photo via Getty Images

Houston-based Satterfield & Pontikes Construction, a provider of preconstruction, construction and consulting services, has launched an analytics-driven platform for project and program management.

The new platform, Prolégo, relies on predictive analytics to help ensure resources and expectations are in sync throughout three key phases of a construction project: consultation, planning, and management.

“By applying proprietary technology to monitor project progress and track changes tied to real-time cost data, the company offers a means to accurately predict outcomes so they can be planned for and measured accurately,” Satterfield & Pontikes explains in a news release.

Among the components of a project that Prolégo measures and tracks are materials, labor, and productivity.

George Pontikes, founder, chairman, and CEO of Satterfield & Pontikes, says Prolégo can serve as a “client’s advocate” for a single project or an entire building program. Clients of Prolégo include the Houston Airport System, the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, Klein ISD, and Spring Branch ISD.

Russ Wallace, former chief facilities officer for facilities planning and construction at the Texas A&M University System, leads Prolégo as senior program executive.

“As the building process has become increasingly sophisticated, there are an incredible number of puzzle pieces that have to fit together seamlessly,” Wallace says. “What we know is that when we monitor work in place versus plan in place, we can address any possible issues early in the process and work more efficiently via quantifiable data. If we can predict outcomes, we can plan for them.”

Other members of the Prolégo leadership team are John Marshall, senior vice president for education; Matt Daniel, corporate vice president; Matt Russel, vice president and program manager; Mark Dinius, director of technology; and Amanda Graham, director of business development.

Satterfield & Pontikes, founded in 1989, provides services for several sectors, such as including K-12 education, transportation, healthcare, government, distribution, and manufacturing.

Aside from its Houston headquarters, the firm has offices in Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio. In addition to Prolégo, its subsidiaries are Rollcon, Westway Construction, Greco Structures, Pontikes Development, Rocket Concrete Pumping, and Eagle Contracting. Satterfield & Pontikes purchased Keller-based Eagle Contracting late last year.

In 2021, Engineering News-Record listed Satterfield & Pontikes at No. 148 among the country’s 400 largest U.S.-based general contractors as measured by revenue from construction contracting.

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Building Houston

 
 

Juliana Garaizar is now the chief development and investment officer at Greentown Labs, as well as continuing to be head of the Houston incubator. Image courtesy of Greentown

The new year has brought some big news from Greentown Labs.

The Somerville, Massachusetts-based climatetech incubator with its second location at Greentown Houston named a new member to its C-suite, is seeking new Houston team members, and has officially finished its transition into a nonprofit.

Juliana Garaizar, who originally joined Greentown as launch director ahead of the Houston opening in 2021, has been promoted from vice president of innovation to chief development and investment officer.

"I'm refocusing on the Greentown Labs level in a development role, which means fundraising for both locations and potentially new ones," Garaizar tells InnovationMap. "My role is not only development, but also investment. That's something I'm very glad to be pursuing with my investment hat. Access to capital is key for all our members, and I'm going to be in charge of refining and upgrading our investment program."

While she will also maintain her role as head of the Houston incubator, Greentown Houston is also hiring a general manager position to oversee day-to-day and internal operations of the hub. Garaizar says this role will take some of the internal-facing responsibilities off of her plate.

"Now that we are more than 80 members, we need more internal coordination," she explains. "Considering that the goal for Greentown is to grow to more locations, there's going to be more coordination and, I'd say, more autonomy for the Houston campus."

The promotion follows a recent announcement that Emily Reichert, who served as CEO for the company for a decade, has stepped back to become CEO emeritus. Greentown is searching for its next leader and CFO Kevin Taylor is currently serving as interim CEO. Garaizar says the transition is representative of Greentown's future as it grows to more locations and a larger organization.

"Emily's transition was planned — but, of course, in stealth mode," Garaizar says, adding that Reichert is on the committee that's finding the new CEO. "She thinks scaling is a different animal from putting (Greentown) together, which she did really beautifully."

Garaizar says her new role will include overseeing Greentown's new nonprofit status. She tells InnovationMap that the organization originally was founded as a nonprofit, but converted to a for-profit in order to receive a loan at its first location. Now, with the mission focus Greentown has and the opportunities for grants and funding, it was time to convert back to a nonprofit, Garaizar says.

"When we started fundraising for Houston, everyone was asking why we weren't a nonprofit. That opened the discussion again," she says. "The past year we have been going through that process and we can finally say it has been completed.

"I think it's going to open the door to a lot more collaboration and potential grants," she adds.

Greentown is continuing to grow its team ahead of planned expansion. The organization hasn't yet announced its next location — Garaizar says the primary focus is filling the CEO position first. In Houston, the hub is also looking for an events manager to ensure the incubator is providing key programming for its members, as well as the Houston innovation community as a whole.

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