Contrarian Ventures Co-leads an Investment in Eliq — a Customer Engagement Platform
The team at Eliq has raised EUR 5 million Series A funding round to scale their advanced customer engagement platform and expand into a wider array of offerings for utility customers in Europe.
Contrarian Ventures co-led the round with Inven Capital. Existing investors followed-on in the round as well. The investment brings Eliq’s total funding since its launch to €9 million and will help the company aggressively expand its sales and marketing efforts as well as accelerate product development. Contrarian Ventures Managing Partner Rokas Peciulaitis will join Eliq’s Board of Directors.
“Having energy tech-focused funds lead our financing says a lot about where this space is going,” said Hakan Ludwigson, Chief Executive Officer of Eliq.
Eliq was formed in 2015, spun out of the home energy monitoring company Exibea, which put the world’s first energy monitoring apps into AppStore and Google Play in 2011. It had its’ first Seed Round investment back in 2017 while raising a total of EUR 3 million lead by a Swedish syndicate of private angel investors. At the time, the company was fundraising to expand its’ presence in the UK market while to this date the company already holds a leadership position in the UK, Sweden, and Norway.
The Stockholm-based startup provides a digital customer engagement platform for energy. Eliq collects and analyses data, generating useful insights to provide utility customers with the best, personalized customer experience and help them understand their energy consumption while assisting utilities in meeting their increasing customers’ demands.
The moment a customer signs up for the utility’s service, Eliq starts using its data analytics to shape their customer behavior positively, and on the other side lets the utility offer the correct services and perks to provide a better service and engage them as a customer.
Hakan explains: “What we do is deliver a seamless customer journey and want to be the software-as-a-service provider for utilities. Our utility customers are tired of integrating different systems from various software providers. We are a natural fit whether the utility requires our front-end customer engagement tools or back-end operational systems and can bring even more value as a complete solution or part of an existing one.”
Utilities themselves are also shifting their focus towards the customer. According to the Infosys survey conducted in the utility sector, we can see that utility providers plan to invest in digital technologies in the coming 12 months. Furthermore, 69% of surveyed companies are currently investing in omnichannel customer engagement strategy and consider it a trend for the coming three years. Finally, sixty-one percent of the respondent organizations have invested in cybersecurity while leaving 50% of companies invested in customer analytics.
Hence, the company is working to become the global leader in energy customer engagement and energy service management through enabling the sustainable energy transition by changing a customer’s relationship with energy throughout their life.
“We are constantly evaluating the energy and consumer information to offer meaningful insights and suggest behavior changes that have an actual impact,” said Hakan. “Usually, there is a multitude of different software applications used by many divisions, where this data is isolated. What Eliq does is provide insights and unlock the real value for utilities to serve their customers better.”
While the company’s solutions may be viewed as overlapping with several digital incumbent and startup companies, the team is taking the open approach where Eliq wants to integrate and co-exist by leveraging existing infrastructure and integrating new solutions as they come along to the market.
“Many utilities have a multitude of offerings for the vast variety of their customers, but you need to be able to show the needed information to the correct audiences where and when they need it. Eliq works to take out all the friction in necessary engagement. In a lot of cases, instead of new tools, utilities need assistance in deciding on a uniform strategy to engage their customers, which is especially important as competition in their space is expected to grow. To fulfill this need, Eliq works with utilities to find out the best way of implementing the change and improve their services.” said Rokas Peciulaitis, managing partner at Contrarian Ventures.
Currently, Eliq has enabled the digital customer experience for a total of more than 15 utilities, including Bristol Energy in the United Kingdom, Naturgy in Spain, and Eidsiva Energy in Norway, proving that the customers need this engagement all over the world.
The business proposition is about guiding utilities into more modern and meaningful digital interactions with their customers and helping them engage previously underserved customer groups better, like offering efficiency programs to elderly and low-income customers.
Customized utility end-user interface which provides everything — from billing information to energy consumption insights
“Eliq is one of the top teams in Europe working to accelerate the digital transformation of the utility sector and enable the rise of technology-powered Utility 2.0. Evolving customer expectations for a more actionable data insights, transparency, and dynamic two-way communication fueled by deregulation of the energy market in Europe, has left established utilities incapable of retaining customers and in need for a platform to better engage with their existing and new clients. The pace and rate of change in the utility sector over the past few years have been astonishing, and utility sector disruption could be compared to the early innings of banking sector transformation and the rise of Challenger banks. We feel incredibly lucky to be supporting this exceptional team with great co-investors and to contribute to Eliq’s success to change the European utility landscape” finishes Rokas Peciulaitis.
Founded in 2015, Eliq customer engagement platform and apps bring utilities all over the world closer to their customers. End-customers gain total control of their consumption resulting in 10x engagement, reduced churn, cost-to-serve and increased in-app upselling.