Utilities expert completes $5m financing for Africa and Asia projects

Harrison Leaf

SteamaCo, a Manchester-based technology supplier to utilities in Africa and Asia, has today announced its $5m Series B equity financing.

This latest round of funding supports the company’s continued technology development and growth, enabling reliable electricity services for hundreds of thousands of previously under-served people across 10 countries.

Manchester-based Praetura Ventures and Shell co-led the investment round, with participation from existing shareholders.

SteamaCo’s smart metering technology and cloud software run on less than 100kB of communications data per meter per month.

This is 100 times more efficient than comparable services and enables utilities to operate in previously unreachable locations.

The potential market for such technologies is vast.

Mini grids, for example, could provide electricity for up to 500 million people by 2030, according to a recent World Bank report.

Harrison Leaf, chief executive and co-founder at SteamaCo, said: “We are delighted to welcome Praetura and honoured to have continued participation from existing shareholders.

“Automation is a key part of the historic privatisation of utilities in Africa and Asia.

“Tens of thousands of times each day our product processes tariffs, monitors grid health and helps technicians, agents and consumers seamlessly go about their daily business.

“It is hugely motivating to everyone at SteamaCo that our work helps bring electricity to those who have never had it.”

David Foreman, managing director at Praetura Ventures, said: “We are very impressed with the team’s strategy and the unique capabilities of their product.

“We are pleased to announce SteamaCo among the initial investments from our first £15m enterprise investment scheme fund.

“We are excited to work with both SteamaCo and Shell to support the business as it continues to grow.”

Brian Davis, Shell vice president energy solutions, added: “SteamaCo has expanded over the last two years, including deployments in Nigeria, Kenya, and India.

“Through its support of mini grid operations, SteamaCo is just one example of how Shell is moving towards its ambition to deliver a reliable electricity supply to 100 million people in the developing world by 2030.”

SteamaCo was advised by AltRaise and Pannone Corporate LLP.

Click here for a comprehensive list of West Midlands deals >
Close