Billionaire Cannon-Brookes supports start-up for energy loans

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Australian tech billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes – his Challenge tweeted to Elon Musk in March get the ball rolling Tesla’s large battery installation in South Australia – has put its investment weight behind a start-up in Australia’s green finance space, a home for energy loans Bright.

Solar roof on the roof

Brighte was founded in 2015 by former Macquarie Group employee Katherine McConnell to make it easier for Australian homeowners to access energy innovations like solar and battery storage without worrying about upfront costs.

The company, which raised $ 3.5 million in an initial round of seed funding, primarily from wealthy investors and family foundations, recently closed a second round of $ 4 million in funding, largely from Cannon-Brookes’ investment vehicle Grok Ventures .

Cannon-Brookes has also invested in Brightes’ debt issue, which includes tranches of securitized loans.

Brighte’s financing model offers homeowners GreendayOnline online loans for a range of energy saving technologies, including energy efficient lighting, smart management tools, and heating and cooling, and charges upfront and monthly fees in lieu of interest over a 12, 24 or 36 period. Month period.

According to McConnelll, Brighte increased consumer credit at a rate of 49 percent over the previous month for the first 10 months of operation. The company expects annual sales of $ 100 million over the next two years and will use the funds raised to expand the scope of its operations and the scope of its technology.

“If we look at the biggest pressures that households face in the coming year, electricity and energy costs will go up. It’s a huge debate and it’s real, ”McConnell said.

“Have banks [funding] Solutions, but they don’t have the right solution. From the product sales side, I think the banks don’t have the right product and have missed the boat. ”

in the Comments on the Australian financial report, Cannon-Brookes said Brighte had a strong business offering encouraging homeowners to invest in solar panels to cut their utility bills and then use those savings to pay back their loans faster.

“It also puts them in a positive mental cycle so they want a battery, efficient water heater, efficient lighting, etc. as credit extension, which further lowers their bills,” said Cannon-Brookes.

“If we can get more households to understand this cycle – let’s just say my grandchildren will have a planet to play on and not a lot of coal company stocks to inherit.”

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