eSmart Systems secures USD 34 million investment for international expansion
eSmart Systems, a Norwegian provider of AI-based analytics for infrastructure inspection and asset health monitoring, has successfully completed a capital raise of USD 34.4 million. Energy Impact Partners (EIP), the US utility-backed investment fund, and innogy Ventures have joined the investment round initially closed by Equinor Energy Ventures, Nysnø Climate Investments, and Kongsberg Digital in December 2018.
Currently, eSmart’s software oversees electricity operations for 48 customers in 7 countries, including Norway, Denmark, the United Kingdom, and the U.S. The company is also a Microsoft Partner and its CTO, Erik Aasberg, has been appointed as a Microsoft Regional Director.
“We are proud to announce EIP and innogy Ventures as eSmart Systems’ new growth partners and shareholders. This partnership has great potential for the energy industry, and we see this as an excellent platform for propelling eSmart Systems into its next phase of international expansion”, said Knut Johansen, CEO and founder of eSmart Systems.
A solid foundation for further growth
Strong partnerships are essential for eSmart’s further growth. For the last 6 years eSmart Systems has received the support of several global players as partners and shareholders, including Equinor Energy Ventures, Nysnø Climate Investments and Kongsberg Digital. With EIP and innogy Ventures entering as shareholders in a second closing, eSmart Systems has fulfilled its ambition to establish a solid foundation from which to expand in both American and European markets.
EIP is a leading US venture fund focusing on the energy sector backed by some of the world’s largest and most progressive utilities. innogy Ventures is the venture capital investment arm of innogy Innovation Hub, funded by innogy SE which is one of Europe’s leading energy companies.
"eSmart Systems can help utilities ensure and maintain the reliability, safety, and resiliency of the electric grid," said Energy Impact Partners’ Michael Donnelly. "EIP is thrilled to have eSmart as a portfolio company and co-invest alongside such strong partners. eSmart’s intelligent analytics solution for energy and utility companies has immediate use cases for our investor base. It helps utilities efficiently and effectively analyze existing and expanding data sources (including images and sensors), providing actionable insights for transmission and distribution systems."
“We are proud to support this terrific team with deep energy industry experience. Based on exceptional AI capabilities, eSmart is providing the next level software needed for a digital, decarbonized and decentralised future energy world. Its Connected Drone product, for example, supports grid operators to maintain their assets with unparalleled efficiency via automated fault detection. With its leading technology, an impressive customer base and powerful investor consortium, eSmart is perfectly placed for rapid international scaling”, said Thomas Labryga, Investment Partner at innogy Ventures.
ESMART SYSTEMS. eSmart Systems builds and delivers the next generation software solutions for inspections of powerlines, grid maintenance planning and energy flexibility optimization. We target utilities worldwide and offer reduced costs and prolonged asset life with the use of our AI-powered solutions. The company is based on more than 20 years of international experience in establishing and operating knowledge based, leading IT and energy related companies targeting global markets.
ENERGY IMPACT PARTNERS. Energy Impact Partners (EIP) is an investment firm focused on the conversion of the energy industry towards a decarbonized, decentralized, digitized and electrified future. EIP brings together leading innovators with some of the world's most valuable, forward-looking energy and operating companies to create a cleaner, more secure and resilient future. Through close collaboration with its investor base, EIP connects the best companies, buying power and vision in the industry to bear on the emerging energy landscape. EIP’s utility partners include Southern Company, National Grid, Xcel Energy, Ameren, Evergy, Fortis Inc., AGL, Avista, MGE Energy Inc., TEPCO, PTT Public Company Limited, OGE Energy Corp., TransCanada, and Alliant Energy.
INNOGY VENTURES. innogy Ventures GmbH is the €130m venture capital investment arm of the innogy Innovation Hub, participating or leading series A and beyond venture capital deals focused on innovative and digital business models in North America, Europe and Israel. Portfolio companies are supported with comprehensive market knowledge, assistance in business development and links to the wider innogy SE’s network in order to support their competitiveness and accelerate their growth.
innogy Ventures and the innogy Innovation Hub are funded by innogy SE, a leading German energy company, with revenues of around 37 billion euros (2018), around 43,000 employees as well as activities in 16 European countries and in new markets such as Australia, Canada and the USA.
EQUINOR ENERGY VENTURES. Equinor’s 200 MUSD venture capital fund was launched in February 2016. With a team in both Europe and North America and a long term approach, the fund is dedicated to investing up to 20 MUSD in attractive and ambitious growth companies in renewable and low carbon energy technologies, supporting Equinor’s strategy of growth in new energy solutions.
NYSNØ CLIMATE INVESTMENTS. The Norwegian sovereign climate investment fund makes commercial investments in companies and funds that contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. Nysnø invests alongside private investors looking for profitable, climate friendly investments. Nysnø is based in Stavanger, Norway and has been operational since mid-2018.
KONGSBERG DIGITAL. Kongsberg Digital is a provider of next-generation software and digital solutions to customers within maritime, oil and gas, and renewables and utilities. The company consists of more than 500 software experts with leading competence within the internet of things, smart data, artificial intelligence, maritime simulation, automation and autonomous operations. Kongsberg Digital is subsidiary of KONGSBERG (OSE-ticker: KOG), an international, knowledge-based group delivering high-technology systems and solutions to clients within the oil and gas industry, subsea, merchant marine, defence and aerospace. KONGSBERG has 11 000 employees worldwide, creating a total revenue of NOK 14.4 billion in 2018.
To eSmart Systems:
• Financial Advisor: DNB Markets
• Legal: Advokatfirmaet CLP DA