FirstFuel Raises $10 Million for Virtual Energy Audits

Lexington, Mass- based FirstFuel Software closed a $10 million financing round to support its energy software for commercial buildings business.

The company’s software, Rapid Building Assessment platform, remotely analyzes a building’s electricity use, eliminating the need for on-site, costly assessments. It delivers large scale operational energy efficiency opportunities across commercial building portfolios.

The investment will help FirstFuel expand in utility and government markets, as well as accelerate product development.

RockPort Capital led the round and was joined by existing investors Nth Power and Battery Ventures, some of the top cleantech investors. 

"Non-residential buildings provide a massive opportunity for energy efficiency," says Todd Wilson, a partner at RockPort Capital. "After a thorough examination of the market and competitive landscape, we found FirstFuel to be the company best positioned to deliver a highly scalable energy information service. FirstFuel’s technology is unique and beyond anything else we looked at, and they have shown the ability to execute and gain traction."   

Commercial and industrial building programs made up 40% of the North American utility industry’s $9.1 billion energy efficiency budgets in 2011, growing 30% over 2010, as more regions turn to energy efficiency as the ‘first fuel’, according to the Consortium for Energy Efficiency.

In addition to working with utilities, FirstFuel has been selected by the Dept of Defense (DoD) Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP) to demonstrate the technology and savings impact on military installations.

The DoD, which spends over $4 billion on energy a year, has committed to spending $10 billion a year to increase energy  efficiency and use of renewable energy.

Last October, we reported that the venture capital community has turned away from riskier investments to softer deals related to software.

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Comments on “FirstFuel Raises $10 Million for Virtual Energy Audits”

  1. Brandt Smith |

    Their software is interesting, but it falls short of the benefits of a full energy audit. Looking at energy consumption paterns is a key part of an audit, but it is a minor part. The real savings come from the walk-through, looking at the acual equipment that is using the energy, and making recommendations based on experiene. Unless you install extensive monitoring equipment (expensive) that allows you to track energy use by piece of equipment, monitoring is only part of the picture.

    In fact, energy monitoring is really part of energy management. This is a different area than energy auditing. The two are complementary, but they are separate services that accomplish differnt thing.


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