PowerScout gets $5.2 million for website with machine learning analytics to predict houses with high solar potential
Written By: Stratton Report
September 14, 2016
On September 14, PowerScout announced it has secured $5.2 million in funding for technology that lowers the price of clean energy by predicting which homes are most likely to adopt it.
The funding was provided by a mix of private and public sources, including the U.S. Department of Energy and its SunShot Intiative, which awarded PowerScout a total of $2.5 million in grants.
The company’s Foresight platform uses advanced image recognition technology, LIDAR data collected by planes, and in-depth consumer data to analyze entire neighborhoods at a time— tagging each home with over 1200 data points ranging from income and education levels to political affiliation and even the type of car an individual drives. The platform also analyzes which houses in the neighborhood already have solar and makes predictions about which others are likely to adopt it.
Homeowners can see how PowerScout rates their home’s overall solar potential on PowerScout.com, a platform that also provides consumers with firm solar price quotes including installation by experienced regional installers. For added support, the company employs a team of subject matter experts known as PowerScout Concierges available by phone, video, and chat.
PowerScout CEO Attila Toth remarked: “We’re excited to bring the same technologies that are revolutionizing the retail, transportation, and financial services industries to the residential energy market. Today when you go solar through a traditional provider, you often end up paying more to cover marketing expenses than for the panels themselves. By pinpointing which homes are most likely to adopt solar we avoid wasteful spending and pass the savings on to the consumer.”
PowerScout Co-Founder Kumar Dhuvur noted:
“It’s surprising, but some of the world’s largest clean energy companies still rely on the same high pressure tactics used to sell vacuum cleaners in the 1950’s. That’s costly for the provider and uncomfortable for the homeowner. We think people should be able to shop for clean energy the way they shop for other things: online and without pressure.”
Per the company, PowerScout is active in 15 states and is an official partner of Google’s Project Sunroof, an initiative that leverages high resolution Google Maps to quantify a roof’s solar savings potential. In addition to connecting consumers with high performance solar systems, financing, and installation, the company has plans to roll out additional clean energy options on its platform such as community solar, battery storage, electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and energy efficient large appliances.