3.5 billion people in the world do not have access to reliable electricity, and over $1T in renewable energy investments are needed in emerging markets in the next decade. Achieving this coverage can only happen if we can greenlight a large number of small projects across many geographies, “leapfrogging” the grid to create a decentralized network of energy resources.
We are excited to announce our Series A investment in Odyssey, which does exactly that. Odyssey’s platform is a digital system-of-record, connecting project developers, financiers, and equipment suppliers and enabling them to transact in a low-friction, high-trust manner across global opportunities.
Project developers in emerging markets use Odyssey’s tools to design and operate energy projects (solar, battery storage, microgrids, etc). They access project capital in Odyssey’s financing marketplace and access volume pricing, better payment terms and optimized logistics in Odyssey’s equipment procurement marketplace. Financiers source projects across disparate geographies, using Odyssey’s operating and financial performance data to underwrite smaller projects with efficiency at scale, and to monitor large and diverse portfolios. Finally, equipment suppliers gain access to a large but fragmented group of buyers that would be otherwise inaccessible.
USV has been investing along an “access to capital” thesis prong for over a decade. We believe that internet-enabled software platforms have the ability to use data and connectivity to make capital vastly more accessible to more people in more places. We also believe that digital systems-of-record like Odyssey, and like our portfolio company Carta, have the unique potential to unlock capital access and many other forms of value across large distributed networks of stakeholders.
We could not be more thrilled to partner with Odyssey’s founder and CEO Emily alongside a strong syndicate of investors including Equal Ventures, Twelve Below, Transition, MCJ Collective, Founder Collective and many others, to help bring desperately needed renewable energy systems to more parts of the world.