The latest DC-area unicorn is climate tech company Arcadia – Washington Business Journal – The Business Journals

D.C.’s Arcadia is the latest area venture to achieve unicorn status — meaning a private company with a valuation of over $1 billion. In the climate tech company’s case, it’s actually blown by that mark to $1.5 billion, the company said, following a massive $200 million Series E investment announced Tuesday.
The round was led by JPMorgan Asset Management’s Sustainable Growth Equity Team, that venture’s inaugural investment. Palo Alto, California’s Triangle Peak Partners also took part as a new investor. Existing partners who participated include Camber Creek of Rockville; New York’s Tiger Global Management LLC; Boston’s Wellington Management; and Park City, Utah’s Drawdown Fund.
That brings the company’s total funding to date to $385 million, the company confirmed, but most of that was gathered in just the last year. Arcadia raised $100 million in Series D funding just eight months ago. That round was led by Global Management and the Drawdown Fund.
“We feel very well capitalized at the moment,” Kate Henningsen, Arcadia’s chief operating officer said in an interview. With the new funding, the company plans to continue expanding into the commercial realm. Up until recently, Arcadia was focused primarily on residential customers. Now, it’s further investing in its Arc platform, through which commercial customers can access and monitor their utility data and use that to build energy products of their own.
“Every company needs to trace their carbon accounting, every company wants to be more sustainable,” Henningsen said, listing electric vehicle makers, residential solar and other service providers and the smart home device industry as potential Arc customers.
To further invest in Arc, Arcadia will have to hire. It’s looking to roughly double its headcount within the next year or so from about 250 employees currently. That’s up from 138 employees in April 2021. It opened a New York office in a WeWork space this spring, but its D.C. office — which occupies about 20,000 square feet — is not likely to grow any time soon, but rather will be repurposed to better facilitate communal gatherings, the company said.
Led by CEO Kiran Bhatraju, Arcadia has grown quickly in recent years, but is not yet profitable. The company saw a year-over-year revenue increase of 155% from 2020 to 2021, it said, although a spokesperson declined to share further revenue details.
Last year, the firm acquired two companies — San Francisco electric vehicle technology startup Nanogrid Technologies PBC and Houston community solar firm Real Simple Energy. Arcadia will keep “evaluating opportunities” for future acquisitions, Henningsen said.
As far as a sale or an IPO in the future, Henningsen said the company would “look to raise capital in the best way possible when the time comes.” She added, “I would say that we are always listening, but we’re excited to have our private round in the Series E, and that’s where we are today.”
Bhatraju is a 2022 Washington Business Journal Diversity in Business Awards honoree.
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