Clir Renewables secures $27M in Series B funding

The cloud-based AI company will use the funds to further develop its smart products which harness data to maximize the returns of clean energy projects.

Clir Renewables, which leverages AI and data to help clients maximize the financial returns of renewable energy assets, closed a $27 million Series B funding round. The financing was co-led by Longbow Capital Inc. and ArcTern Ventures, and included, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments), BDC Capital, Active Impact Investments and Tokio Marine HCC. Clir has now raised a total of $35.9 million in equity funding and $8.7 million in non-dilutive funding.

Why it matters: Through this deal, Clir has secured funding from some of the leading national and international energy and tech investors. And according to Clir CEO Gareth Brown, the firm’s investors want to “bring more than just capital to Clir by acting as strategic partners and customers of the business.” He believes, “This is the best possible endorsement of our technology and the gains the platform helps asset owners to achieve.”

“Technology and data will be at the core of the effective growth of renewables,” Brown added, “with comprehensive operational and environmental data increasingly defining the full asset lifecycle, from development and financing to asset optimization, M&A, insurance and repowering."

Details: Since the business was founded in 2017, Clir has built technology to support asset owners of renewable energy assets in 11 countries through its AI-driven monitoring and optimization platform. Clir’s existing customer base collectively owns more than 10% of the global installed wind and solar capacity.

This latest round of funding will allow Clir to further develop ‘smart’ products, utilizing industry-wide data to evaluate technical and financial risk with more accuracy. In addition, the company plans to accelerate its growth timeline in North America and Europe, as well as grow its presence in Latin America, Africa and Asia-Pacific.

The money talks: “As one of Clir’s earliest institutional investors, we have gotten to know the team very well over the years,” said Mike Winterfield, Managing Partner of Active Impact Investments. “The Clir team are total experts in their space, and their ability to expand within their massive client base is a strong signal of the value they continue to provide. Having placed senior people on several continents, the company is now making a truly global impact on the clean energy transition we’re seeing around the world.”

The bigger picture: 2021 has been characterized by record investment in renewable energy projects and ‘green’ services, with research group Rystad Energy indicating that capital investment in renewables will reach a record $243 billion this year, an increase from $224 billion in 2020. One could speculate this is partly related to the fact that the pandemic delivered a major shock to oil companies as demand for their product (associated capital projects) declined significantly. What’s more, the rapid and necessary adoption of renewables will depend on accurate and clear data for stakeholders, which can help them justify the costs involved in such projects. That’s exactly where Clir steps in.