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Intel makes $10M bet on smart grid, energy efficiency

Intel makes $10M bet on smart grid, energy efficiency

Intel's global investment arm has committed $10 million to five companies specializing in smart grid and energy efficiency technologies.

The recipients include CPower, Grid Net, Powervation, Convey Computer, and iControl. Four of the five are U.S.-based; Powervation is located in Limerick, Ireland.

It is Intel Capital's initial funding in CPower, a New York-based energy management and demand response firm that helps companies reduce energy consumption and earn market payments for the reductions.

Intel Capital's investment in Grid Net is part of the San Francisco-based company's Series C funding. Grid Net is the provider of Smart Grid network management software and communications products.

Intel Capital's latest investment in Powervation is the second for the company; Intel Capital co-led the company's Series A funding round. Powervation makes digital power controllers for servers, desktop computing and communications platforms.

Convey Computer of Richardson, Texas, has now received two investment infusions from Intel Capital, the last of which is part of its Series B funding round. The company specializes in high performance, energy efficient computing.

Palo Alto, Calif.-based iControl, a home automation and monitoring company, received Intel Capital's investment as part of its Series C funding round.

"These investments share synergies focused on accelerating adoption of Smart Grid technologies, fostering energy efficiency and performance in ways that benefit consumers of electricity and power utilities as well as complement Intel's strategic objectives," Steve Eichenlaub, managing director of platform technologies, cleantech and digital health at Intel Capital, said in a statement. "Each investment underlies Intel Capital's commitment to invest in cutting edge technologies and support our expanding portfolio of cleantech-related companies."

Intel Capital pursues technology start-ups and companies from around the world whose inventions have the potential to improve the performance per watt of Intel architecture deployed across multiple business segments. The business unit has invested more than $9 billion in more than 1,000 companies since 1991.

Investment is one pillar of Intel's Open Energy Initiative, which aims to accelerate a worldwide transition to smart energy. Other actions include policy influence, energy efficiency and smart grid partnerships with utilities, and assuming a leadership position in related government programs, coalitions and standards.

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