A Boston-based, cleantech startup Digital Lumens closed a $10 million series B investment, the company announced today, that will allow it to bring its LED-based, intelligent lighting systems to warehouses and industrial facilities in the U.S., Canada and Mexico near term. The company’s earlier backers all participated in the series B, including: Black Coral Capital, Flybridge Capital Partners, and Stata Venture Partners.
Previously, the company focused on making warehouses greener in terms of lighting-related energy consumption. Digital Lumens’ chief executive, Tom Pincince, said of the company’s progress and near term strategy:
We’ve built a complete [lighting] solution from the fixture through the networking and the software. Our customers use, but don’t “do” lighting, unlike other the owners and operators of some commercial office buildings. It is valuable for them to have a single point of contact, and technology that guarantees interoperability within their facilities as they upgrade and retrofit their lighting systems to become more energy efficient.
Part of our appetite for growth is not just from warehouses to the broader manufacturing and industrial base here, but outside of the U.S. We can address Canada and Mexico. We’re also looking into expanding overseas to address European and Asian markets that have similar requirements for energy efficiency, and in many cases, a culture of efficiency that’s far more mature than the U.S. along with energy prices that are multiples of what we pay here.
Digital Lumens will also use some of its series B funding to develop new features for its LightRules software. LightRules helps facility owners and operators set up parameters by which they want their lights to respond to a number of factors, like brightening when the number of people in a facility increases, for example, or dousing at times of low occupancy. LightRules, down the line, will offer more granular controls, automating the lights’ response to energy pricing, and more.
One of Digital Lumens’ recent customers, Americold, replaced its older lighting systems— which used more energy, generate more heat, and aren’t as durable in the freezing temperatures of cold storage warehouses— with LED-based systems. The companies, and LEDs Magazine reported, that the installation was responsible for energy savings of 90 percent.
Mike Rubino, Digital Lumens chief financial officer remarked that working with the company’s earlier backers allowed everyone at the startup to get back to growing the business. Rubino is well-known for helping to take another cleantech firm, A123 systems public. While he could not comment on timing, he and the executive team at Digital Lumens do have hopes of an eventual public offering in the U.S.
As Digital Lumens focuses on greening factories and warehouses, and international expansion, a peer and competitor in the industry Redwood Systems, yesterday revealed that it is moving into smart building controls beyond lighting as part of its strategy.
Digital Lumens develops the industryâ€™s first Intelligent Lighting System, which reduces customersâ€™ lighting-related energy use by up to 90 percent. Designed for industrial facilities, Digital Lumensâ€™ solution integrates LEDs, networking and software into a single system that transforms industrial lighting into a powerful platform for improved efficiency, control and operational insight. The company was founded in 2008 and is based in Massachusetts.
Flybridge Capital Partners is an early-stage venture capital firm whose mission is to assist entrepreneurs in growing innovative, global companies. With $560 million under management, the firm is focused on investing in consumer, energy, healthcare and information technology markets and is led by a team with domain expertise and more than half a century of combined experience in venture capital. Funds include Flybridge Capital Partners III, L.P. (2008), Flybridge Capital Partners II, L.P. (2005), and Flybridge Capital Partners I, L.P....
Stata Venture Partners is a private equity fund that invests in early stage new business opportunities . They have strategic investments in a wide array of technologies. Stata Ventures specializes in helping companies build the internal infrastructure and long term strategic plan needed to be successful in today’s dynamic marketplace. Stata Ventures was founded by Ray Stata, founder and Chairman of Analog Devices (NYSE: ADI), a leading semiconductor corporation.
Black Coral Capital is a fund investing in the alternative energy / cleantech space. The fund can invest in a wide variety of cleantech arenas, both directly and through funds. Black Coral was formed in late 2008 and is presently building out its presence in North America.