Major investment boost for Proterra

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Prospects for EV future stimulates financial backing

USA Proterra Inc., which claims to build the most cost effective zero emission battery electric bus, has closed more than $24 million in ‘Series C’ financing round amid rising demand for its transit solutions. Support for this round of funding was bolstered by Proterra’s projected 225% revenue growth for the close of 2013.

This round of funding included two new strategic electric industry investors, Edison Energy, Inc., a subsidiary of Edison International and Constellation. Edison and Constellation join Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., Vision Ridge Partners, Hennessey Capital and 88 Green Ventures to complete the round. In conjunction with the investment closing, Bert Valdman, President of Edison Energy, and Michael Smith, Vice President and Head of Technology Ventures for Constellation will serve as observers to Proterra’s Board.

“Constellation’s decision to invest in Proterra is based on the company’s clear leadership position in the rapidly expanding international electric vehicle (EV) market,” said Smith. “We are pleased with Proterra’s growth and believe further market expansion will continue based on Proterra’s ability to simultaneously address pressing transportation, environmental and financial challenges for a wide range of metropolitan areas and commercial transportation users in the US and abroad.”

The addition of these new electric industry funding partners is a critical development for Proterra, which is actively working with utility companies to develop strategies to optimise EV buses to leverage grid power distribution and ensure low cost energy alternatives. Proterra’s investors already include many top sustainable technology funding companies and automotive manufacturers, giving the company a competitive edge in terms of expertise and intellectual capital.

“One of Edison Energy’s core strategies is investing in the electrification of transportation, and Proterra is an emerging leader in the field,” said Bert Valdman, President of Edison Energy and Senior Vice President of strategic planning for Edison International. “We are pleased to partner with Proterra, a company leading the charge in bringing safe, reliable, electric-drive transit buses to market.”

Proterra will use ‘Series C’ proceeds to fund production growth and product development efforts to keep pace with booming demand.

“The benefits of EV mass transit are compelling to a wide range of audiences,” said Garrett Mikita, Chief Executive Officer, Proterra Inc. “It offers significant cost savings to transit agencies; drastically reduces fuel consumption, air and noise pollution; and improves the quality of life of the communities it serves. This round of funding is not only an acknowledgement of the strength of the company and the industry, but of Proterra’s commitment to leadership and working with all key stakeholders, including the power supply industry, to create the most effective and efficient transit solutions on the market.”