- Published: January 3, 2012
- Written by Amanda H. Miller
California-based Tigo Energy is successfully wrangling investors for its SmartModule technology for solar photovoltaic installations.
The technology works behind the scenes, a spokesman explained, as the electronic brains of a solar panel. The maximizers, as Tigo refers to them, intelligently account for dust, shading and clouds to “maximize the harvest” of solar energy.
The technology allows the individual monitoring and management of solar panels.
Tigo claims that the SmartModule system can increase energy output from standard solar photovoltaic panels by up to 20 percent. They go beyond the average micro-inverter to allow panel owners to monitor individual modules and make adjustments remotely that optimize their performance.
The company has been gaining favor with investors in recent months. It got a big cash infusion in October and just received another $18 million in an investment round led by Bessemer Venture Partners.
“Our investors recognize that distributed PV electronics has emerged as an exciting new market segment,” Tigo CEO Sam Arditi said in a statement earlier this year. “And Tigo Energy’s Maximizer technology is helping take PV solar arrays to new levels of efficiency, productivity, safety and manageability.”
The new investment funding brings Tigo’s coffers up to $50 million, according to a press release from the company. However, it announced in April that a $10 million cash infusion from Generation Investment Management, a clean energy investment firm founded by former vice president and green advocate Al Gore, had raised its total funding to $50 million then.
The company, run by former heavyweights from computer chip developer Intel, said it plans to use the new money to expand its commercialization, manufacturing and marketing efforts.