The venture fund of French power giant Schneider Electric is backing a satellite grid monitoring startup that uses machine learning with $10m to improve the resilience of the electricity grid.
The funding from SE Ventures into AiDash in the US will be used to boost the Intelligent Vegetation Management System (IVMS), Intelligent Sustainability Management System (ISMS) and Disaster and Disruption Management Systems.
Power outages are becoming more frequent as natural disasters intensify due to the climate crisis. From 2000 to 2021, 83 percent of reported power outages were caused by weather-related events including wildfires, tornadoes, and hurricanes, which only escalate as the climate warms.
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“Vegetation is the biggest cause of power outages and one of the most critical factors for grid resilience,” said Abhishek Singh, co-founder, and CEO of AiDash.
“Schneider Electric has a very robust portfolio of solutions related to grid resiliency and we see particularly strong synergy with their EcoStruxure Grid Asset Advisor offer. The strategic fit was so great that we didn’t want to wait until our Series C round – planned for 2023 – to work with Schneider Electric. Together we’re even stronger on our mission to modernize electric grids, prevent and minimize natural disaster damage, and fight climate change through AI and satellite technology.”
AiDash’s Disaster and Disruption Management System (DDMS) forecasts storm and wildfire outages and damages to plan quickly, and restore safely, for utilities as well as energy companies, governments, and cities. The system works in near real-time before, during, and after a major natural disaster or extreme event.
AiDash’s other products, including Intelligent Vegetation Management System (IVMS), are used to help core industries become more resilient, efficient and sustainable, while DDMS is for emergency management at scale. The latest financing will be used to further enhance the research and development of AiDash’s products, hire new talent, and expand to additional global markets.
“Vegetation and disaster management are pressing challenges for utilities across the world and AiDash has developed a very scalable solution that not only delivers satellite analytics in an automated manner but also turns those insights into simple actionable decisions that operations teams can implement. We are thrilled to partner with AiDash in bringing their innovative technology to our customers,” said Luis D’Acosta, head of the Digital Grid business at Schneider Electric.
In less than 12 months, AiDash has seen nearly 300% growth in revenue and doubled its employee headcount and customer base, reaching over 75 utilities as customers in 2022.
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