Social Energy is closing in on raising up to £50 million in new finance, after more than 20 companies expressed an interest in helping support the energy tech firm’s expansion.
The start-up has tasked investment advisory firm Evercore with the fundraise, and around 25 companies are now carrying out due diligence having been granted access to a data room outlining Social’s technology and business plan.
A “broad spectrum” of companies have expressed an interest in Social Energy, its chief executive Ryan Gill said, with venture capitalists and institutional investors joined by energy companies, oil majors and telecommunications firms.
Interest from the latter of that list is likely to stem, Gill said, from growing interest in a subscription model for energy supply, rather than the existing commodity-based, pay-per-unit adopted by suppliers today.
But Gill is keen to stress that the level of funding is matched by the need to find the right partner. “It’s not just the money we’re looking for, it’s also the synergies the investor can bring to accelerate the scale at which Social Energy can grow,” he said.
Due diligence is expected to last around four weeks, with Social Energy planning on closing the funding in late August, in time for a launch into new markets and expected ramp-up of installation activity.
Since formally launching earlier this year, Social Energy has laid claim to impressive growth, with its installer partners having fitted some 500 batteries in the UK last month. That figure would be enough to place it among the market leaders, Gill said, contributing to interest in the fundraise.
Proceeds from the funding round are to be used primarily on an international expansion. Social is eyeing launches in both the US and Australian markets, the latter of which is more advanced. A team is already in place in Sydney and the company looks set to launch its Australia-facing offering in October, which will again be launched in conjunction with Duracell.
Funding is also required to secure stock necessary to maintain installation rates, while proceeds will also be used to support continued technical development of the company’s technology platform.
As well as battery storage units, Social Energy’s platform will soon be compatible with electric vehicles and the company recently received BEIS funding to examine its use with hot water tanks. HVAC systems are also on Social’s radar, essentially creating a portfolio of household and C&I devices whose energy consumption management can contribute to flexibility provision.