Golden, Colorado-based Proterra, Inc.— the makers of electric commercial vehicles, systems and charging stations for them— raised $30 million, the company announced today. The investment was led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) and joined by GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co., Vision Ridge Partners and 88 Green Ventures.
According to a press statement today, Proterra will use its new funding to: complete federal testing of its buses; supply vehicles and systems to pilot fleets; and increase the number of buses and systems its Greenville, South Carolina plant manufactures each year. The plant is supposed to have the capacity to produce 400 buses annually, when fully operational.
Proterra’s brands currently include the EcoRide (image, above) bus and FastFill charging station. The company promises that the EcoRide bus can be fully recharged in ten minutes or less on the FastFill charging station. Of the components and content in a Proterra, EcoRide bus, 80 percent are made in the U.S. across 33 states.
Manufacturing industry veteran, David Lehmann, joined Proterra as its new chairman with this deal. Lehman previously worked with General Electric (GE) and Solar Turbines Inc., a subsidiary of Caterpillar. Michael Linse, a partner at KPCB, also joined the board.
Image: The EcoRide BE35, a 35-foot, low-floor composite body transit bus with battery-electric vehicle architecture (courtesy of Proterra, Inc.)
Proterra is answering the international call for efficient, cost-effective and environmentally responsible heavy-duty vehicle solutions. Headquartered in Greenville, SC, Proterra is a leading designer and manufacturer of heavy-duty drive and energy storage systems, vehicle control systems and complete transit buses. Proterra’s systems are scalable to all forms of commercial buses and Class 6-8 trucks. Proterra’s initial product, a 35’ battery-electric transit bus, has been designed from the ground up to enable a world’s first ever solution for transit agencies...
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) is a well known Silicon Valley venture capital firm, due in large part to their past success. They were early investors in many significant companies, including Amazon, AOL, Compaq, Electronic Arts, Google, Intuit, Macromedia, Netscape, Segway, and Sun Microsystems. The name of the firm comes from the four founding partners: Eugene Kleiner, Tom Perkins, Frank J. Caufield, and Brook Byers. In March 2008, KPCB announced the iFund, a $100M investment initiative focused on ideas...