S&P Global – Texas Crisis Fuels Investor Interest In Grid Management Startups, Rooftop Solar
Two weeks after a winter storm nearly took down Texas’ power grid in February, a software company called Uplight Inc. that promises to make the U.S. energy system more resilient vaulted to unicorn status with a new round of funding valuing the firm at $1.5 billion.
Power crises like the February outages that left millions of Texans freezing in the dark for days and the 2020 rolling blackouts in the western U.S. caused by extreme heat and wildfires have sparked demand for on-site energy systems like solar panels and batteries. But as the Uplight fundraising indicates, it is also accelerating investor interest in startups offering grid management platforms for a world where intermittent renewable resources, distributed solar and storage occupy larger portions of the generation mix.
It is an increasingly urgent challenge as the U.S. looks for ways to slash carbon-dioxide emissions and electrify large swaths of the economy while more extreme weather events strain aging infrastructure.