GridPoint Receives $15 Million Investment from Quercus Trust, Expands Board of Advisors, Announces Test Results

GridPoint

GridPoint, a Arlington, Virginia-based company that offers a "smart grid platform" that leverages information technology to align the interests of electric utilities, consumers and the environment announced on March 27th that it received a $15 million strategic Investment from the Quercus Trust. 

In this announcement the company also stated that it added Robert Danziger, Paul Feldman, T.J. Glauthier, R. James Woolsey, and Daniel Yergin to its Board of Advisors.  Other members of GridPoint’s Board of Advisors are former U.S. Senator Bill Bradley, Esther Dyson, David J. Jhirad, and William A. Nitze.

GridPoint was founded in 2003 and has received a total of $102 million in equity capital to date.  Other investors in GridPoint include Altira Group, Goldman Sachs Group, New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Perella Weinberg Partners, Robeco, and Susquehanna International Group (SIG).

According to the company, some of the value offered by its GridPoint SmartGrid Platform is as follows:

The platform applies information technology to the electric grid to provide utilities with an intelligent network of distributed resources (e.g., advanced load control devices, batteries, solar systems) that reside at the point of consumption – the home or business. Additionally, the platform’s modular, scalable [ed. note: revised spelling] and upgradeable architecture enables utilities to create a practical path for integrating new clean technologies (e.g., plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and fuel cells).

During peak demand periods, the platform enables utilities to efficiently balance supply and demand by discharging stored power or reducing loads with minimal impact on customers (i.e., controlling temperature versus shutting down air conditioners). Utilities can also optimize existing baseload generation assets and relieve stress on transmission and distribution (T&D) lines.

The platform serves as a virtual peaking power plant, enabling utilities to avoid the regulatory, environmental and "time-to-build" hurdles associated with building centralized plants while fueling the mass adoption of renewable energy, reducing carbon emissions and conserving fuel, capital and land resources.

For consumers, GridPoint’s platform provides protection from power outages, increases energy efficiency through online energy management and integrates utility-controlled renewable energy systems, paving the way for the commercial success of residential and light commercial solar and wind energy sources.

An illustration of how GridPoint’s SmartGrid Platform works is provided below (click for full-size image):

GridPoint SmartGrid Gateway Overview

GridPoint also released a separate press release on March 27th in which it and Duke Energy announced positive results from what is believed to be the first commercial test of utility-controlled "smart charging" for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

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