The latest funding round for the South Carolina-based company included GM Ventures, Hennessey Capital and previous investors Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Mitsui. Proterra's customers include the Tallahassee, Florida transit authority StarMetro, which ordered three EcoRide buses and a quick-charge station last fall. You can read more in Proterra's press release below.
Company closes 2012 with seven transit authority customers on board;
Hennessey Capital leads round with top tier investors
GREENVILLE, S.C., November 21, 2012 – Proterra Inc, the leading provider of zero-emission commercial transit solutions and maker of the world's first battery-electric fast-charge transit bus, the EcoRide™, has closed a $23 million Series B financing round amid rising demand for its transit solutions. Proterra has tripled orders under contract for the company's flagship EcoRide™ from public transit agencies in the past twelve months alone and is planning for its current growth path to continue.
The round was led by new investor, Hennessey Capital, who joined additional outside investor NMT Capital as well as existing investors, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, GM Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Global Investment, Inc., 88 Green Ventures and Vision Ridge Partners. In conjunction with the investment closing, Rajiv Ghatalia, President and Founder of Hennessey Capital Management LLC, will join Proterra's Board as an advisor.
Before joining Proterra's board and founding Hennessey Capital, Ghatalia spent sixteen years in Asia Pacific, first at Goldman Sachs then at Warburg Pincus, and has served on boards such as Transpacific Industries, Nikko Asset Management and Junior Achievement.
"Our investment in Proterra demonstrates our firm belief and that of our fellow investors that the company's EcoRide™ has solved a major concern for the world's aging transit fleets – that is, how to deliver emissions free, quiet bus transit that provides an attractive financial return for struggling transit agencies," said Mr. Ghatalia. "Proterra's innovative products, industry leading customers, top flight management and talented work force have this company poised for tremendous future success, and I look forward to being a part of the team charged with taking this thriving company to the next level."
"This latest round of investment and the addition of Mr. Ghatalia to our board are evidence of the vast progress Proterra has made in terms of business development, infrastructure, technological advancement, demand generation and process improvements, and to our investors' confidence in our business," stated David Bennett, Proterra's CEO. "We intend to use the funds and to leverage Mr. Ghatalia's global finance expertise and keen business acumen to continue our growth."
This investment round will accelerate Proterra's revolutionary EcoRide™ bus deployment to new US transit customers, open new markets and spur next generation system offerings. The $60 billion global transit market continues to recognize the ideal fit for battery-electric fast-charge systems, which yield 500%+ energy efficiency gains and 80% emission reduction and provide an attractive passenger experience.
Proterra has achieved a number of milestones in the past 18 months, growing from two to seven major transit agency customers with a large and growing pipeline. Earlier this year, Proterra's EcoRide™ became the first heavy-duty electric transit bus ever to complete challenging federally required durability and reliability testing at the Bus Research and Testing Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania, demonstrating best in class energy efficiency and noise levels.
With manufacturing in Greenville, S.C., Proterra is a leader in the clean technology and clean energy space, designing and manufacturing heavy-duty electric drive systems, energy storage systems, vehicle control systems, transit buses and fast-charging stations. Proterra's systems are scalable to commercial buses of all sizes. Its ground-up designs have led to the EcoRide™, the world's first full-size, 10-minute charge battery-electric transit bus. For more information on Proterra and its technology, please visit: www.proterra.com.