Smart grid player Trilliant closes $40 million in funding round

Trilliant, a green tech company that's working with about 100 utilities on various smart grid deployments, has just closed a $40 million round of equity funding from a group of investors including affiliates of MissionPoint Capital Partners and zouk ventures.Trilliant CEO Bill Vogel characterizes the investment as an important endorsement of his company as it eyes a potential public offering.

Trilliant, a green tech company that's working with about 100 utilities on various smart grid deployments, has just closed a $40 million round of equity funding from a group of investors including affiliates of MissionPoint Capital Partners and zouk ventures.

Trilliant CEO Bill Vogel characterizes the investment as an important endorsement of his company as it eyes a potential public offering. Vogel says Trilliant, which is 20 years old, generated about $50 million in revenue last year, and it anticipates driving another $50 million in sales for its current fiscal year.

To date, the company has delivered more than 750,000 intelligent devices that are being used for advanced metering, demand responses and other energy-efficiency applications. It is also part of a high-profile project at Hydro One in Ontario that will ultimately reach approximately 1.3 million customers and municipal utilities. Between now and 2025, Ontario is building out a new electricity system that will involve replacing up to 80 percent of its current generating facilities. As part of that process, the provincial government has required local distribution companies to deploy smart meters in all homes and small businesses in the province by 2010. Trilliant is involved with the Advanced Metering Infrastructure part of the project. The systems integrator for the project, something I need to dig into a little deeper, is Cap Gemini.

Vogel paints the smart grid opportunity as massive, if numbers released earlier this year by The Climate Group and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative are any indication. In that report, the largest single market related to green IT was the smart grid, generating about $124 billion by 2020.

Other players on the smart grid scene include SmartSynch, Echelon, Aclara, Itron, Elster and Landi+Gyr. Special note to the person who asked a couple of weeks ago: Yes, I will try to provide miniature profiles of each of these players over the coming weeks.

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