Matt Gray, the founder of BuiltWorlds, kicks off the Venture East event in Miami, Florida, where Document Crunch was chosen as the gold medalist in the 2021 Construction Startup Competition.

December 1, 2021

Construction Startup Competition Gives Dysruptek Global Perspective

Two-way visibility in the global contest gave Haskell's VC and innovation arm an opportunity to identify and support a new set of emerging technologies.


In its mission of disruptive innovation, Dysruptek took a global step forward with its sponsorship of the 2021 Construction Startup Competition, which recently crowned its 10 winners and one gold-medal award recipient.

As Haskell’s venture capital and innovation arm, Dysruptek is dedicated to scouting, piloting and investing in emerging technologies. Joining the worldwide alliance of innovative companies staging the event expanded the enterprise’s field of vision and visibility.

“We were able to gain exposure to several companies that were operating outside of the geography that we usually operate in,” said Cutler Knupp, Haskell Director of Strategy and Technology Innovation, who has led Dysruptek since it was formed in 2018. “We were and are applying those learnings, especially internationally, as many of those companies are building strong businesses in significant countries in the EU. We were able to glean insight from all the finalists, and it was hard to pick a winner. They’re all very impactful companies. The fact they cast a larger global net was important to us.

“It was a very positive experience for us. We expanded the reach of our brand in places we typically wouldn’t be operational.”

Knupp said Dysruptek previously had monitored the competition, which has amassed more than 2,000 solutions from 1,000 startups across 80 countries since its 2017 launch and had built relationships through mutual investments.

But as an invited cosponsor in 2021, Dysruptek connected with 400 companies that applied, conducted calls with the top 100 and then met in person with the top 10 during the early November BuiltWorlds 2021 Venture East Conference event in Miami, Florida. It will pilot several of the finalists in business ventures, Knupp said.

“We have had more of a call to innovate globally across the construction value chain, and this is extremely valuable for us,” he said. “Europe is a place where we didn’t have a lot of visibility before.”

Dysruptek, CEMEX Ventures, Ferrovial, GS, Hilti, VINCI Group’s Leonard and NOVA by Saint-Gobain sponsored the competition. Gold medalist Document Crunch was selected by a jury of organizers and an audience of experts at the Miami event. Five categories were offered for solution submissions: carbon footprint mitigation, supply chain optimization, efficiency in the jobsite, advanced building materials and new construction methods.

Document Crunch, an Atlanta-based AI-powered software company, identifies and explains critical issues in construction contracts. The other finalists included AI Clearing (U.S.), hyperTunnel (UK), Nodes & Links (UK), ObraLink (Chile), Presien (Australia), ProcurePro (Australia), RatedPower (Spain), Schüttflix (Germany) and WASTEBOX (Austria). All the finalists focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI), digital or cloud-based capabilities and bridge a diverse supporting base from materials to general contractors to hardware.

“AI is a dominant theme in a lot of technology,” Knupp said. “What Document Crunch is doing is a smarter, faster way to success in a normally strained area. It is definitely an application that is providing a lot of immediate value.”

Supporting these new businesses, and innovation writ large, is a natural extension of Haskell’s culture of thinking differently and developing new methods of success.

“The competition is an avenue for entrepreneurs and innovators who haven’t had a chance to get visibility for the project they are working on,” Knupp said. “It is great to provide opportunities where these companies haven’t raised funding or are building their business. We provide partners that want to work with them. And it’s a direct channel to work with some of the largest constructors on the planet. The competition bolsters a lot of early ideas, even among those companies not in the top 10. That helps all parties.”

Contact us today to innovate with Haskell and Dysruptek.

Haskell delivers $2± billion annually in Architecture, Engineering, Construction (AEC) and Consulting solutions to assure certainty of outcome for complex capital projects worldwide. Haskell is a global, fully integrated, single-source design-build and EPC firm with over 2,200 highly specialized, in-house design, construction and administrative professionals across industrial and commercial markets. With 20+ office locations around the globe, Haskell is a trusted partner for global and emerging clients.

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