UrbanVolt sparks upon a €55m funding deal with UK investor Low Carbon

12 Jul 2018

From left: UrbanVolt founders Declan Barrett, Kevin Maughan and Graham Deane. Image: UrbanVolt

UrbanVolt and Low Carbon join forces to reduce global energy consumption.

Irish energy tech firm UrbanVolt has signed a €55m funding deal with UK investment company Low Carbon.

In the biggest deal of its kind to date, the investment will be used to deliver energy-efficiency projects across the US, UK and continental Europe.

In addition to working with companies across Ireland, 45 multinational companies have signed up as UrbanVolt light-as-a-service (LaaS) clients to date, including Pfizer, Zimmer Biomet, Cargotec and Pipelife.

UrbanVolt and Low Carbon share a common mission to reduce global energy consumption and it is envisaged that the CO2 emissions that will be reduced by this investment is the equivalent of removing all daily rush-hour traffic from Manhattan.

Lighting up the low-carbon revolution

Urbanvolt was one of the first company's globally to sign up for the UN's Global Lighting Challenge and has delivered energy savings to permanently turning off 1 million lightbulbs. Pictured: Fiona Cairns, Edel Kennedy and Maura Ryan. Image: Urbanvolt

UrbanVolt was one of the first companies globally to sign up for the UN’s Global Lighting Challenge and has delivered energy savings equivalent to permanently turning off 1m lightbulbs. From left: Fiona Cairns, Edel Kennedy and Maura Ryan. Image: UrbanVolt

Founded in 2015, UrbanVolt delivers LaaS to its corporate clients across Europe and the US. It upgrades commercial buildings to LED lighting for no upfront capital cost, enabling companies to save 75pc on their lighting costs while also dramatically reducing their carbon emissions.

A proportion of the energy saving is then paid to UrbanVolt as a service charge for the first five years, during which time the company also maintains the lights.

“Low Carbon has an excellent record in investing in innovative business models in the energy services sector and we see them as a great long-term partner for UrbanVolt as we look to expand in the US, UK and continental European markets,” UrbanVolt CEO Kevin Maughan said.

“This deal will ensure that we can deliver thousands more projects each year. In addition, the multi-currency dimension of the financing arrangement is key, given that we are working on new projects with a growing list of clients across the US and Europe.

“In the US, there has been huge interest in our ‘off-balance sheet’ light-as-a-service offering with larger corporate clients, and our existing projects with Irish-based US multinationals have proved invaluable in demonstrating the effectiveness of UrbanVolt in delivering large-scale energy-efficiency projects. We recently opened new offices in Chicago and Florida and we hope to open a further office in California in the near future.”

Low Carbon is a London-based, privately owned UK company that specialises in renewable energy investment. The firm develops and invests in renewable energy projects and technologies while also managing assets on its balance sheet for listed and unlisted third parties.

“Low Carbon is committed to investing in world-class renewable energy solutions which mitigate the negative effects of climate change,” explained Dominic Noel-Johnson, investment director at Low Carbon.

“UrbanVolt has developed a leading light-as-a-service delivery model to help companies realise significant savings through energy efficiencies, without incurring any upfront cost. This has important financial benefits, but also ensures businesses are contributing to sustainably reducing their carbon emissions.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years