Blog Post

Energy data company Opower to raise up to $100M in IPO

Stay on Top of Enterprise Technology Trends

Get updates impacting your industry from our GigaOm Research Community
Join the Community!

After reports that it confidentially filed for an initial public offering last month, energy software company Opower has now officially filed documents signaling it plans to go public. The company said in its S-1 on Monday that it plans to raise up to $100 million in the process, and file on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol OPWR.

Founded in 2007 by entrepreneurs Alex Laskey and Dan Yates, Opower works with utilities to make energy efficiency products like itemized energy bills, emailed energy efficiency tips, and thermostat software. The company is essentially a big data and behavior analytics play, and Opower uses utility energy consumption data to craft ways to convince utility customers to reduce their energy consumption. Last week the company launched the fifth version of its software.

Sample utility bill with data from Opower
Sample utility bill with data from Opower

According to the filing Opower generated revenues of $88.70 million in 2013, which was significant growth from revenues in 2012 of $51.76 million. The company has yet to turn a profit as Opower said it’s been funding its growth as opposed to focusing on profits. In 2013 Opower lost $14.16 million, and in 2012 Opower lost $12.33 million. As of the end of the year 2013, the company had accumulated a deficit of $83.2┬ámillion, with cash and cash equivalents of $28.82 million and total assets of $63.13 million.

The founders of the company still hold considerable equity. Before the IPO, Laskey owned 17.4 percent and Yates owned 22.4 percent. Venture investor NEA owns 21.8 percent, while MHS owns 8.3 percent. Accel and Kleiner Perkins both own 5.4 percent.

Honeywell & Opower smart thermstat website
Honeywell & Opower smart thermstat website

Here’s a couple things to know from the numbers from Opower’s filing. The sales cycles to bring in utility customers are pretty long, and a lot of big utility customers make up a significant portion of Opower’s revenue. Its ten largest customers represented 61 percent of its revenue.

So essentially Opower needs to continue to bring in new sales deals with utilities both in the U.S. and internationally to grow. The company has 465 employees and 133 of those are in sales; 188 are in R&D and 144 are in operations and services. Only 17 employees were outside of the U.S.

To date, Opower has managed to bring in a large amount of utility customers, and particularly the really large utilities, for being a startup. The company has 93 utility customers, including 27 of the largest 50 utilities in the U.S. Opower says it manages utility data from 37 percent of all U.S. households.