Why We Invested in Jupiter Intelligence
March 4, 2019
Energize Ventures is proud to announce we are leading a $23M Series B investment into Jupiter Intelligence, the leading provider of predictive data and analytics for climate risk. Existing investors Data Collective and Ignition Partners joined the round with fellow new investors Mitsui MS&AD, QBE, Nephila, and SYSTEMIQ. With our investment, John Tough is joining the board of directors alongside Matt Ocko, Nick Sturiale, Andrew Klein, and Rich Sorkin, Jupiter’s co-founder & CEO.
Weather & climate’s impact for energy and infrastructure
It’s hard to overstate the impact that weather and climate have on critical infrastructure, whether that’s buildings, ports, power plants, or wind farms across the world. Capital-intensive, immobile, complex assets are exposed to the harsh realities of more frequent and more severe weather and climate events. According to NOAA, in 2018 there were 14 weather and climate disaster events in the US with losses exceeding $1 billion each. Even more illustrative to climate change’s impact is that 4 separate weather events individually caused more than $7 billion in damage. Floods and fires that not long ago would have been classified “once-in-a-lifetime” events are resurging every few years, with unfortunately increasing costs for asset owners, operators, and citizens.
Construction, zoning, and underwriting specifications are proving insufficient. Ports, energy infrastructure, commercial developments, public infrastructure, and countless residences are at risk. And, while change itself is inevitable, knowing what to expect — or how to prepare — seems impossible.
But, should it be? Google Maps can prepare you for your commute time with near certainty, accounting for traffic and route congestion. Software can be used to can predict physical system failures with stunning accuracy. Why should we be left to blame the weatherman for what are much more important decisions such as where to site, how to prepare, and how to more accurately underwrite massive capital projects?
The Energize team was searching for a company working with real-world data to drive better decisions in industries heavily affected by weather and climate patterns: energy, critical infrastructure, and agriculture. Digging deeper, we came to understand the complexity of the problem at hand. It requires the combination of deep meteorological information across sources, systems, and geographies with vast modeling requirements. The outputs need to be precise, accurate, and actionable. Furthermore, the solution needs to be scalable to handle a variety of analyses for clients across the world.
Next century tools for an age-old problem
Enter Jupiter Intelligence. Jupiter is building the leading data analytics platform to accurately predict and assess climate risks. Jupiter’s global solution will cover multiple perils (flood, fire, heat, drought, etc.) and deliver forecasts and analyses ranging from 1 hour to 50+ years predictive models for all sectors: energy, critical infrastructure, industrial, transportation, resources, real estate, and beyond. What’s most exciting is that Jupiter’s assessments are focused at the asset level, providing an unprecedented granular level of insight.
Building the vision — and delivering the promise — requires a unique combination of brains. And the Jupiter team is exceptionally well-suited in this regard. Jupiter Intelligence’s cofounder & CEO, Rich Sorkin, is a serial entrepreneur with a long and successful history commercializing AI, GIS in the enterprise sector. Co-founder and COO, Eric Wun, most recently led Google’s Skybox satellite division and brings renowned and complementary domain expertise in data analytics and compute modeling infrastructure. Along with Rich and Eric, the team has a truly All-Star combination of weather modeling expert teams led by Dr. Betsy Weatherhead, a Nobel prize winning expert on Climate Change for the IPCC and NOAA, and Dr. Alan Blumberg, the developer of one of the world’s foremost models of the ocean. Rounding out the leadership team in product and business development are Dinesh Sharma, who led SAP’s cloud business, and Matt Stein, a former leader in GE’s digital business. Jupiter’s bench of talent runs far deeper, and we expect the company’s mission to continue attracting the best and brightest in climate risk.
In addition to early success in critical infrastructure, Jupiter is also working with the financial services and public sector. Customers include 6 of the global 1000 corporations in power, energy, insurance, and mortgages, as well as New York City, Miami, and the U.S. Federal government. A multi-sector strategy enables Jupiter to provide the analytics to support both the capital planning and resiliency investments of the asset owners AND support better terms for insurance and borrowing while enabling a more productive discussion about public sector resiliency investments.
As is customary with Energize Ventures diligence, we relied heavily on our network of operators in the industrial and energy environment to provide insight into the predictive analytics weather market opportunity. Through this research we cemented our conviction that critical infrastructure companies will dramatically increase their budgets towards technology solutions that deliver weather-related insights. Based on Jupiter’s proprietary technology and the world-class team, we firmly believe that Jupiter Intelligence will become the emerging standard serving this market opportunity.
At Energize Ventures we invest in technology companies that make the energy & industrial verticals more affordable, reliable and secure. Jupiter’s technology platform directly addresses the ability to lower operating cost and make new and existing assets more reliable.