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Exclusive: David Energy closes $20m Series A

Alan Neuhauser
Mar 28, 2022
Illustration of a lightbulb with a glowing filament in the shape of a bar chart.
Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

David Energy, a New York-based electricity provider, has closed a $20 million Series A led by Union Square Ventures' climate fund and Keyframe Capital, CEO James McGinniss tells Axios.

Why it matters: New York is among the dozen-plus states that have enabled the rise of retail electricity providers, and David deploys software that integrates with customers' distributed energy resources.

The details: Additional investors include new investors Toba Capital, Turntide and James Dice, as well as existing seed investors Equal Ventures, Box Group and MCJ Collective.

How it works: Retail electricity providers (REPs) essentially sell the electrons flowing across poles and wires to the homes and businesses at their endpoints.

  • "Think of us as Amazon or a logistics company shipping packets of energy on public roads," CEO James McGinniss tells Axios.
  • The company's software integrates with smart thermostats, solar panels, battery systems, EV chargers and other customer resources.
  • The software adjusts consumption in real-time, chiefly by dialing back demand as much as 50% when electricity demand is high, helping reduce electricity bills while easing strains on the grid.

Go deeper: David Energy customers include Barry's Bootcamp and Crunch Fitness franchises, and the company plans to expand this summer to residential offerings.

  • The company had initially hoped to sign-up large commercial and industrial clients, but soon pivoted to smaller commercial tenants, particularly "chain stores, restaurants, gyms, and retail storefronts," McGinniss tells Axios
  • The company is set to launch a pilot in New York this summer aimed at the residential market.
  • David's service area also includes New Jersey and Massachusetts, and it plans to introduce its commercial offering in Texas this fall.

What they're saying: "We know Shell and BP and Exxon because we’re so familiar standing at the pump filling up gas. There’s not a similar experience with electricity," McGinniss tells Axios. "But as ... power outages continue to happen and they get generators or use their Ford F-150 to back up their home, the experience users have with their electricity is going to get more and more real."

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