ENGIE, through its corporate venture fund “ENGIE New Ventures”, announces two new investments in North America: Serviz, a California-based company transforming the country’s $400 billion home services industry and Opus One Solutions, an Ontario-based company developing a comprehensive real-time operating platform for utilities and microgrids. Serviz and Opus One Solutions bring ENGIE New Ventures investments to a total of four new investments in North America in 2016.
North America is one of the leading regions for ENGIE’s recent investments in innovation, affirming the commitment of the Group to lead the energy transition is this region and the vitality of the American cleantech industry. “In just over two years, ENGIE built an effective cleantech ecosystem in the U.S. and Canada. We are eager to continue this win-win approach with startups: benefiting from their inventiveness while bringing our technical know-how and significant customer base” says Thierry Lepercq, Executive Vice President, Head of Innovation, Research & Technology.
Serviz: a revolutionary E-tailer of on-demand home services
ENGIE led a $9.7 million Series C equity round in Serviz. Currently in seven major markets and covering more than 300 services across 18 service categories – including handyman, plumbing, electrical appliance repair, etc. - Serviz plans to use the capital to expand its on-demand platform across the U.S. Through its proprietary technology platform and network of independent service professionals, Serviz delivers best-in-class pricing and streamlined ordering, scheduling and payment for home services.
Homeowners use Serviz to instantly schedule everything from a simple handyman repair to installation of a new heating/AC system. Connecting ENGIE’s building and energy services expertise with the simplicity and scalability of Serviz’s on demand platform will open a range of innovative service opportunities.
Serviz currently serves homeowners in seven U.S. domestic markets – Los Angeles, Orange County, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle, Chicago, and San Jose/Silicon Valley – and has plans to expand nationwide. Furthermore, ENGIE and Serviz will test the possibility to offer services on some key European markets, thus paving the way for an acceleration of ENGIE’s e-commerce development.
"We've seen really strong adoption and repeat customer usage of the Serviz offering in our existing markets" said Zorik Gordon, CEO of Serviz. "We have an aggressive rollout strategy, and these funds will enable us to expand into new services and new markets. This latest round led by ENGIE is a strong validation of our momentum to date and the size of the opportunity ahead of us."
In January 2017, Serviz will attend the 50th edition of the CES in Las Vegas at the ENGIE booth (Sands Expo, Level 1 Hall G, Eureka Park Next).
Opus One Solutions answers the needs of new power grid management
ENGIE places a strategic investment in Opus One Solutions. The investment will enable ENGIE to further support the development of smart grid solutions addressing the growing market for distributed energy resources (DER) while aiding the expansion of Opus One Solutions’ customer base, globally.
Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, Opus One Solutions develops a comprehensive real-time intelligent energy networking platform, GridOS®,for utility distribution grids and microgrids. The company’s proprietary algorithms integrate real-time distributed resources as well as sensors, meters, and analytics, providing grid operators with real-time state estimation of two-way power flows and several applications including:
- Distributed energy resource management: managing and facilitating the adoption of higher penetration of DERs ;
- Enabling emerging transactive energy platforms and markets, allowing the customer to have a greater role in how they use energy ;.
- Operating networks of microgrids, with a broader “Grid-of-Grids” vision ;
- Storage: integration of storage assets within the distribution grid or microgrids, for both residential and business customers.
North America, a beacon of innovation
Recent investments in mobility, home-services and solar analytics, also demonstrated that the future of the business of energy lies at the crossroad of energy and digital technologies. In every investment data analytics play a key role for value-creation :
- ENGIE invested in March 2016 in StreetLight Data, a California-based developing StreetLight InSight, a web app capable of measuring transportation behaviors in minutes.
- In September 2016, ENGIE took a minority stake in kWh Analytics, a risk management specialist for solar companies, developing two products : HelioStats (the industry’s leading risk management tool) and PowerLock (insurance service to reduce the cost of capital for solar).
The world of energy is undergoing a profound and lasting transformation. In this context, the Group has set itself the goal of becoming a leader in energy transition, in particular by focusing on innovation. This drive is at the core of the Group’s efforts to transform good ideas into operational services for the benefit of its customers. ENGIE New Ventures, a €115 million Corporate Venture Capital fund, has been investing in 13 innovative startups since 2014. It has offices in Paris and in San Francisco.