28 March, 2022 Member article

SparkMeter Raises $10 Million to Accelerate Growth in the Implementation of its Advanced Metering Solution Globally

Washington, 24 March 2022 – SparkMeter, a provider of grid management services, equipment, and software solutions, today announced a $10 million raise led by Accurant International with participation from existing investors Breakthrough Energy Ventures and Clean Energy Ventures. This financing brings SparkMeter’s total financing to $22 million and will enable its growth in global markets, including enabling access to reliable electricity in underserved communities across Africa, Asia and the Americas.

“SparkMeter is deploying a first-of-its-kind advanced end-to-end metering and operational analytics solution for electricity providers,” said Bahman Hoveida, founder of Accurant International. “Our team’s experience in the global utility sector uniquely positions us to help accelerate SparkMeter’s growth and introduction of its solutions to Distribution Utilities worldwide.” Hoveida also founded Open Systems International, which was acquired by Emerson Electric (NYSE: EMR) in 2020 for $1.6B.

SparkMeter’s newest product offering will help utilities address daily challenges that arise from poor grid edge visibility, congestion, and stress on lines and transformers, and plan for new grid dynamics such as DERs and EV chargers. The technology combines real-time data streams from the edge of the utility’s network with a detailed model of the grid, creating a so-called “digital twin.”

“SparkMeter has become the most widely used plug-and-play grid management technology using advanced meters,” said Dan Schnitzer, CEO and founder of SparkMeter. “It’s the most economical solution available to utilities in emerging markets when it comes to data reliability in places with low bandwidth internet, while also providing meter to cash capabilities and in-depth grid analytics.”

SparkMeter will be releasing the first stage of its software platform, KoiosTM, in April 2022. Koios is an easy-to-use interface that can do meter-to-cash, detailed system insights, and smooth integrations to improve distribution system operations.

“SparkMeter has been very successful in the microgrid sector, and its latest technology development will enable the expansion of reliable power to distribution utilities in the same underserved regions,” said Carmichael Roberts of Breakthrough Energy Ventures.

Utilities around the world face the challenge of providing electricity via aging and deteriorating grid assets while meeting growing customer demand, which often results in unreliable energy access throughout Africa, Asia and South America. To make up for this, backup generators “serve 20 to 30 million sites with an installed capacity of 350 to 500 gigawatts (GW), equivalent to 700 to 1000 large coal power stations,” according to The International Finance Corporation. SparkMeter’s technology helps utilities in underserved markets improve their reliability and collections, which accelerates the retirement of expensive and dirty diesel generators while deploying cleaner sources of energy.

“The grid of the future will need to be reliable, responsive and secure as global electricity demand surges, and emerging markets will need innovative and cost effective solutions such as the SparkMeter’s offering to help decarbonise their energy systems while expanding equitable energy access, especially in Africa and Asia,” said Daniel Goldman, co-founder and managing partner of Clean Energy Ventures.

With the use of modern industrial IoT technology platforms like SparkMeter, utilities can leapfrog the IT-heavy paradigm of systems like Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), which has been widely deployed in the USA. AMI systems are expensive, complex to deploy and operate, and often require high bandwidth connectivity. SparkMeter’s ecosystem of integrated hardware and software offers a plug-and-play solution to utilities more economically, while lowering the maintenance burden. As a result, customers like Engie Energy Access and Husk Power Systems leverage SparkMeter’s suite of offerings to improve reliability and profit margins and adapt to changing grid dynamics with the increasing electrification of everything.