Amped Innovation Completes Series A to Catalyze Demand for Off-Grid Energy Appliances

Oct 01, 2019 · 3 min read

Earlier today, our first equity investment, Amped Innovation, announced the closing of its Series A round. A big congrats to co-founders Andi Kleissner and Kurt Kuhlmann and the whole Amped team. While a fundraise may close on a single day, it is the work of many grueling months for the entrepreneur, and we at FINCA Ventures are proud of how far the company has come through that process.

It has been two years since we first invested in Amped. While much has changed since that time, both for Amped and the sector at large, our fundamental beliefs remain the same: We still believe that market unbundling and more modular, affordable product designs are needed to further unlock off-grid solar. And we have only grown more certain that Amped is the company and team to make it happen.

But there is one paragraph, tucked away in our initial Why We Invested piece, that especially rings true as we read Amped’s press release:

Amped recognizes that electricity is not an end in itself; it powers the things that augment productivity and quality of life…These assets will not only offset product costs within the first year, but also help low-income customers grow their wallets. Demand for these appliances drives demand for electricity and by growing their wallets, makes energy access even more affordable to the world’s poor.

We can’t help but be excited reading the Series A announcement, knowing that the company now has the capital it needs to bring products focused on cold-chain, water pumping and diesel generator replacement out of R&D and into the hands of customers. As Andi says:

The completion of our Series A funding marks the beginning of an exciting and critical new chapter for Amped Innovation. We’re eager to partner with distributors to scale the reach of our ultra-affordable, off-grid, power products, providing end users with energy access that starts with home lighting and scales over 10X to power small businesses, all from the same affordable WOWsolar base platform.”

This new chapter can’t come soon enough. Not only are distributors, farmers, small business owners, families, schools — the unelectrified communities across our markets — hungry for opportunities at home and at work that Amped appliances can unlock, but new research is showing the need for more affordable (and financeable) appliances to make the economics of mini-grids sustainable. This will further expand access to reliable, affordable electricity and the quality of life improvements that come along with it.

In response to a question about where Amped would be five years from now in our Meet the Entrepreneur profile, Kurt said:

“It feels a bit vain to say it this way, but I think that Amped can be the little company that figured out how to power half the world.”

We at FINCA Ventures don’t think it’s vain. We think it’s bold. And with the Series A raise now complete, we are charged up to see what comes next for this soon-to-be-not-so little company.

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