UK energy supplier Octopus Energy has launched in the US, thanks to the acquisition of Silicon Valley-based startup Evolve Energy.
The $5 million (£3.9 million) deal will see Octopus Energy US – as the new business will be known – begin operating in Texas, targeting 25 million energy accounts by 2027.
Since launching in 2016, Octopus Energy has grown in the UK to have a customer base of 1.7 million customers, and is targeting 100 million globally by 2027, of which the new, US contingent will play a key role.
“Octopus Energy is inspirational in growing a customer base of over 1 million households in just four years,” said Evolve Energy founder Michael Lee, highlighting the similar customer satisfaction scones to Netflix and Amazon.
“It matches our aspiration for innovation and we’re thrilled to be part of the Octopus family. The US energy market is rapidly moving towards ultra-low cost renewable energy and is prime for a true digital transformation.”
Already the company has expanded into the Australian and German energy markets, including reaching unicorn status in April 2020 thanks to Australian energy company Origin Energy acquiring a 20% stake for nearly $400 million (£311 million).
Octopus’s acquisition of Evolve will allow it to rollout its proprietary cloud-based energy technology platform Kraken in the US. Already there are 17 million energy accounts worldwide contracted to the platform, which the company says enables greener, cheaper energy for customers and aids the transition to a clean energy.
Evolve Energy uses AI and machine learning to optimise energy usage, helping customers to get the best price from renewable energy. The start-up was launched two years ago with backing from Matt Rogers, the cofounder of Nest, through his fund Incite.
Octopus Energy CEO and founder Greg Jackson said that Evolve was doing “great things with real-time energy, connected home devices, and renewables".
“We’re excited to be working with Michael and the Evolve team to bring futuristic technology, green energy and excellent customer service to Texas.
“In just four years, we have attracted 1.7 million customers to our business with a total of 17 million accounts contracted to our platform between ourselves and our license partners. Our ambitions for the US are high, but we haven’t missed a target yet.”
Octopus Energy is the second UK utility to make the jump into the US market this week, with Bulb launching in Texas as well.