LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Sept. 11, 2018—FirstBuild™, a global co-creation community backed by GE Appliances, a Haier company, has already engaged thousands of makers in person and online to invent a new world of appliances. In early 2019, these connections will expand as FirstBuild opens a location in India in collaboration with T-Works, the state of Hyderabad’s dynamic new prototyping center and makerspace where people can converge to turn their ideas into working prototypes.
“FirstBuild entities harness community insights and the power of the maker movement to change how products come to market around the world,” said Melanie Cook, Chief Operating Officer for GE Appliances. “The new creative center is one of a kind in the Hyderabad region where budding creators will find an open community focused on building a new generation of appliances that transform the home. As the country’s largest makerspace, T-Works is the ideal location for FirstBuild India to begin its journey.”
FirstBuild’s location in India aims to mirror the success of the centers of excellence in Louisville, Kentucky, and Shanghai, China, in transforming ideas like an affordable nugget ice makerand precision cookware for the countertopinto actual products consumers love to add to their homes. With the participation of its tens of thousands of online community members, FirstBuild fast-tracks promising appliance concepts by taking the most popular ideas and building products in small batches – thus creating another way GE Appliances is driving a robust product pipeline.
FirstBuild’s location in India will begin operations early next year and will be staffed by FirstBuild associates working alongside T-Works’ designers, programmers, students, craftsman and makers.
“What’s exciting about FirstBuild is the community decides what it wants to make, and it can be anything that creates value for the owner,” says Chandramouli Vijjhala, Chief Information Officer, India, GE Appliances, who will spearhead FirstBuild activities in Hyderabad. “You see this in products like an indoor pizza oven that can bring families together, or a talking laundry module that announces the settings on your washer if you have trouble reading the dials. It’s too soon to know where the path will take us, but we’re eager to let the community lead the way.”
The partnership between FirstBuild and T-Works was commemorated with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU) on Sept. 11 in the presence of Sri K.T. Rama Rao, the Honorable Minister for Information Technology for the state of Telangana,and Melanie Cook. The MOU, signed by Sujai Karampuri, Chief Executive Officer of T-Works, where FirstBuild will be located, and Chandramouli Vijjhala, is aimed at bringing smart products and appliances to market faster through open product innovation that engages India’s growing maker community.
Watch for further updates from GE Appliances as FirstBuild’s India location begins to move ideas and imaginations forward in the months ahead. In the meantime, you can visit a place where the community’s ideas come together to make something for everyone.
FirstBuild is a global co-creation community backed by GE Appliances, a Haier company, that harnesses the power of the maker movement to change the way major home appliances are conceived, designed and manufactured. With centers of excellence in Louisville, Kentucky, Shanghai, China, and Hyderabad, India, as well as an online community of more than 20,000 individuals, FirstBuild quickly delivers better products that improve the lives of consumers. For more information about how to get involved, visit FirstBuild.com.
About GE Appliances
GE Appliances, a Haier company, creates “good things, for life” through our passion for great appliances and the happiness they can bring to every household. With the Hotpoint, GE®, Haier, Café™, GE Profile™and Monogram®brands, owners have more choices for making their kitchens and homes amazing each day. Our products include refrigerators, freezers, cooking products, dishwashers, washers, dryers, air conditioners and water filtration systems. For more information, visit www.geappliances.com/our-company.