General Compression Inc., a Newton, Mass.-based developer of compressed air energy storage systems, has raised $3 million in new venture capital from a fund managed by Northwater Capital Management. It previously raised $17.9 million from US Renewables Group and Duke Energy.
General Compression, Inc. (“GC”), a Massachusetts company developing an innovative compressed air energy storage system, today announced it has closed $3 million in Series A Financing commitments from the Northwater Intellectual Property Fund, managed by Northwater Capital Management. This investment follows a recent financing in February that included US Renewables Group (“USRG”) and Duke Energy, and increases the total Series A Financing to $20.9 million.
“Having the Northwater Intellectual Property Fund as a General Compression investor is a welcome addition to our Series A Round and reinforces the value proposition of our intellectual property strategy. Northwater has a history of helping clean energy companies maximize their IP as a scalable competitive advantage. Our modular GCAES technology will enable dispatchable, renewable power projects that can provide hundreds of hours of responsive energy storage capacity,” said Eric Ingersoll, CEO of General Compression.
GCAES™ is a modular compressor/expander system that has a nominal size of 2 MW and features a roundtrip electrical efficiency in excess of 70 percent. Unlike conventional turbomachinery-based compressed air energy storage, GCAES consumes no fuel and emits no carbon. GCAES technology can increase utility reliance on renewables, eliminate wind power curtailment, enhance transmission utilization, and make dispatchable renewable power available to customers.
“General Compression is clearly an innovative company with a strong intellectual property position in the energy storage space. GCAES technology could have a tremendous impact on power markets that are increasingly influenced by the penetration of intermittent renewables such as wind and solar. Making wind energy fully reliable and dispatchable is a key milestone for the renewables sector,” said Andrew Harrison, Vice President at Northwater Capital.
GC and its partners plan to develop both integrated wind/storage projects and standalone power storage projects, including one or more projects with ConocoPhillips in 2011. GCAES projects can be sited near existing wind farms, or other generating sources, to more effectively utilize existing transmission lines and produce firm power. Storage facilities can be built in arrays of modular GCAES units, from 2 MW to 1,000s of MWs, optimized by the profile of regional power demand.
About the Northwater Intellectual Property Fund
The Northwater Intellectual Property Fund is managed by Northwater Capital Management Inc., a leading, privately held, investment management company. With offices in Toronto, New York and Chicago, Northwater focuses on investments in intellectual property and intellectual property rich companies. Investee companies typically have compounding business models and investments are diversified across industries, geographies and the capital structure. The fund’s objective is to combine leading intellectual property, compounding business models and world-class management to generate exits and excess returns. For more information please see www.northwatercapital.com.
About General Compression
Founded in 2006, General Compression, Inc. has made patent-pending advancements in the fields of isothermal compression and expansion to provide utility-scale storage for clean electricity sources such as wind and solar. GC’s near-isothermal compressor/expander module is used to create 2 MW to 1,000 MW, 8 to 300 hour discharge, compressed air energy storage (CAES) projects. Company founders Eric Ingersoll, David Marcus, and Michael Marcus launched GC with a vision of creating Dispatchable Wind™ to integrate low-cost bulk storage with wind farms to eliminate the issues of intermittent power generation. The company’s technology and projects are designed to set clean, domestic wind power on a path to become the dominant electric power generation source in the United States. GC can be found on the web at www.generalcompression.com.