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Charleston energy software company raises $29 million investment

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A second round of funding for a Charleston software company focused on energy savings for homeowners brought in $29 million from investors recently.

Palmetto, which has employees working across the United States, is headquartered at Pacific Box & Crate on Upper King Street. The company completed the Series B round of funding with investors from the energy, financial technology and software sectors, the company said in a news release.

Series B funding typically is used to accelerate the growth of a startup and can indicate to future investors how the company expects to grow. Founder and CEO Chris Kemper said the $29 million will be used to grow Palmetto’s product lines and expand into a wider range of services.

Investors in the latest round include Evergy Ventures, Arctern Ventures, Shell Ventures, Greycroft, Lerer Hippeau, Box Group, Falkon Ventures and Leto Ventures, the company said.

“We have a validated strategic roadmap that continues to withstand the test of time,” Kemper said in a statement. “We have an excellent team and, most of all, a resilient, agile culture that continually adapts to market needs. Our core mission of climate change mitigation has remained front and center in everything we do for over a decade.”

Specifically, the company said the money will be used to grow Palmetto’s workforce, for research and development, software, data science, building out customer services and supporting the company’s geographical expansion, the company said.

Robert Linck, chief investment officer for Shell Ventures, said Palmetto has plans for products and services, including EV charging, energy bill management and energy retail, which will offer consumers “truly integrated renewable energy solutions.”

Brock Smith, managing director at Evergy Ventures, indicated that Palmetto was positioning itself for a market where governments and regulatory agencies were going to start putting more pressure on companies for climate change.

“Palmetto’s unique business model, which utilizes an end-to-end platform for enterprise customers in addition to opening up opportunities for individuals to make a direct impact on carbon reduction through sales, positions the company well for an increasingly digital and decentralized workforce in clean energy,” Smith said in the news release. “Palmetto is more forward-looking than the traditional publicly traded vertically integrated solar providers. The company has exhibited a clear path to customer acquisition cost reductions that are necessary to accelerate solar deployment around the United States.”

The company’s first round of funding came in 2018 with Greycroft as the lead investor, Palmetto said.

“Renewable energy is the future, and Palmetto has the best platform to bring renewable energy products and services to the market in a cost effective and scalable manner,” Greycroft principal Will Szczerbiak said in a statement. “The leadership team and the network of partners they have built is best in class, resulting in substantial growth. We are excited to continue being a part of their growth story.”

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