FirstFuel tackles buildings’ energy data

I’ve been watching smart grid analytics startups like Bidgely, because I find their advanced disaggregation algorithms pretty fascinating. Effectively, it can asses energy footprints of homes as well as individual power draws (like HVACs, or pool heaters) based on the smart meter data alone.

Bidgely has been active in the residential space, but startup FirstFuel has gone after the commercial building space, producing energy recommendations for buildings based solely on analyzing a year’s worth of hourly energy data and the building’s address. The company just pulled in another $8.5 million in VC.

According to FirstFuel its platform “identifies building-specific patterns and data signatures related to weather, occupancy and end-uses at an hourly level.” From that data, it produces audits and overall building monitoring is produced, that includes predictive analytics.

We’ve had a major success in the residential space with Opower but no company has really cracked energy auditing and monitoring for buildings, partially because these buildings already have extensive building management systems that are slowly being upgraded to include energy monitoring. But FirstFuel’s approach is very scalable and a software only solution, two facets that I imagine make it exciting to investors.

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Adam Lesser

Cleantech Curator Gigaom Research

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