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Exclusive: Nat Bullard's Halcyon nets $10.8M for energy data service

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Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios.

Halcyon, a startup co-founded by longtime energy expert Nat Bullard, raised a $10.8 million seed round for an AI-powered search service, the startup tells Axios.

Why it matters: Bullard is one of the most well-known experts on the global energy transition.

Driving the news: Bullard is turning his knack for data insight into an AI-driven SaaS.

  • The service, Halcyon, uses machine learning and large language models (LLMs) to sort through the reams of documents produced by public utility commissions and energy regulators.
  • The idea is to arm industry analysts and investors with intel on what various energy and electricity agencies may be doing — and which groups may be influencing them.

Zoom in: The U.S. Treasury Department, for example, was flooded with nearly 30,000 public comments on how it should implement hydrogen incentives in the Inflation Reduction Act.

  • At the state level, California's Public Utility Commission has been embroiled in a lengthy, almost byzantine legal fight over how to compensate community solar projects.

"It's extremely valuable to know what the arguments are, where they might emerge in other jurisdictions, what people are making comments, how to group those," Bullard, the startup's chief strategy officer, says.

  • "To know, for instance, how utilities think of a judge's opinion versus advocates versus smaller players, larger players."

Catch up fast: Bullard was among the early columnists covering the energy transition, using often overlooked data from his role at research service BloombergNEF to produce insights that could be sobering or eye-popping.

Between the lines: Halcyon closed its all-equity round Dec. 5, concluding a quick two-week raise.

  • Obvious Ventures and Congruent Ventures led, joined by Overture Climate VC.
  • Obvious Ventures managing director Andrew Beebe joined the board with Bullard and Halcyon CEO Bruce Falck, who was Twitter's head of revenue product.

Halcyon's other co-founders are Jonathan Lewis, who was head of product at Stripe, and engineer Alexander Huras.

State of play: Halcyon is among a growing crop of AI startups aiming to sort through energy regulatory data. HData, for example, closed a $10 million Series A in January led by Buoyant Ventures.

What's next: The San Francisco-based startup is in private beta. It plans to initially focus on California before expanding in scope.

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