Startup has a battery for buildings
San Francisco hotels have been the first customers for Salim Khan’s Stem, which relies on electric car batteries and the cloud.
The advent of longer-lasting, cheaper electric car batteries is powering energy efficiency in buildings as well as electric vehicles.
Millbrae, Calif.-based Stem Inc. has developed technology for commercial and industrial buildings that uses large batteries — the same kind used in electric cars — and advanced analytics to predict when to store and use power to save customers money. Stem just announced its first two deployments at San Francisco’s InterContinental and the Mark Hopkins hotels.
The company is funded by Angeleno Group and Greener Capital, which put $10.2 million in earlier this year.
Stem, founded in 2009 as Powergetics, has 44 employees, up from 30 in April, and has received about 50 orders for its systems. CEO Salim Khan, who joined the company in October, said Stem expects to reach 500 orders in 2013.
Khan said with the installation of Stem’s cloud-based, energy optimization systems with batteries totaling about 25 kilowatt hours in capacity, the InterContinental could expect to cut 25 percent off its energy bill.
“One beauty of the Stem system — you bring it in, you plug it in, it asks for no changes. It sits there and watches how electricity demand from the hotel is fluctuating and automatically, whenever it’s in the interest of the facility to use energy as storage to reduce costs, it does so,” Khan said.
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