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Y Combinator-backed startup, Pylon, raised $19 million in funding.

Y Combinator-backed startup, Pylon, raised $19 million in funding.

Pylon, the infrastructure management platform that transforms electricity and water services in emerging markets, announced a $19 million seed funding round.

Phase 1 of the seed round for growth-stage startup @YC, to be profitable and expand on 3.5x in 2021, began with Y Combinator’s initial investment, and attracted a wide array of actuaries and investors (from North America and the MEA region).

The funding round’s particular combination of equity and debt was put together by Endure Capital, which was backed by the United Kingdom Department for International Development Finance Institution. Additionally taking part were Cathexis Ventures, Khawarizmi Ventures, Loftyinc Ventures, and several prominent investors.

Pylon is accelerating the growth of their worldwide infrastructure by expanding to emerging markets, particularly Southeast Asia, Africa, and Central America, and increasing engineering R&D. The company is currently in talks with multiple private corporations across two continents whose implemented more than one million end points of their smart grid system, across 15 distribution companies. Pylons aims to have three million of its smart metering points by 2023, representing an annual increase of four times.

Pylon does not create upfront costs for its hardware, but the company’s Smart Metering as a Service (SMaaS) model makes it successful for cash-conscious utility companies to implement the solution at scale. With no upfront investment, Pylon can assist utility companies in generating up to 40% more profit.

Pylon attempts to democratize smart grid technology to those energy companies in emerging markets, enabling them to capture up to $400 billion in lost and uncollected revenue. Pylon uses data and artificial intelligence to increase revenue collection, reduce losses, and mitigate the energy footprint.

Pylon is protecting the planet from carbon emissions, one meter point at a time, as smart meters can collect more electricity data. Another of Pylon s missions is to achieve 1 Gigaton in reduction of carbon emissions by the year 2035. Water losses in emerging markets can reach over 45 million cubic meters daily. Pylon can reduce this by as much as 22%, which can supply enough water for over 40 million individuals.

Ahmed Ashour, Co-founder, and CEO of Pylon, commented:

 “We are delighted that our solution received such heightened interest and acclaim from a wide range of global investors. Our impact-driven vision of developing technology to better manage resources, eradicate inefficiencies and remove pain points in the utilities sector raised a call-to-action and many responded.

 “Our plug-and-play solution and flexible pricing models give utilities the full benefit of smart grids just by signing with us – increasing their aggregate revenue by up to 40%. With a $22 billion market opportunity, we provide a compelling model for investors who seek a fast-growing, profitable company, which, most importantly, has a significant impact on preserving our planet. Pylon’s ultimate goal is to benefit humanity, our clients, and our stakeholders.

“2022 will be an exciting year for Pylon as we embark on our next phase of growth which will see us expanding further into Africa, Latin America, and SE Asia. We will also seek increased debt facilities to fast-track the accessibility of infrastructure solutions to utilities in friable economic landscapes.” 

Tarek Fahim, GP and founder of Endure Capital, commented:

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 “We are excited to support the strong team at Pylon, who are building a unique software-centric solution to support more sustainable and smart infrastructure for utilities companies in emerging markets. As one of the highest-ever valuations for a seed-stage company in the Middle East & Africa, and we are delighted to be at the forefront of positive change in the region. 

“We believe that there is a multi-billion dollar market opportunity at hand, and that Pylon’s frictionless model provides a compelling solution for utility companies to be more efficient, sustainable, and digitally-driven. Most importantly, we believe that Pylon will have a significant environmental impact on preserving our planet, benefit our local communities, and create lasting economic value for our own stakeholders.” 

Ahmed Medhat, Board Advisor at Pylon (and Principal Research Scientist at Meta), commented:

 “When Ahmed Ashour and co-founder Omar Radi first walked me through what they had built, I was immediately hooked. The two have taken a bold and imaginative approach to resolving efficiency problems of legacy utility distribution systems in emerging markets, and I’m extremely impressed with the financial traction they have demonstrated within just a few months of their MVP.   

 “By focusing their R&D and overall product ethos on approaches that fit the specific market dynamics of emerging market utilities, Pylon have developed their unique SMaaS model and have been able to upend big international players whose off the shelf utility management solutions don’t fit the needs of local utility companies in emerging markets.”

© 2020 CANDOUR

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