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Dutch VC invests in $24M funding round of this Australian AI startup for expansion in Europe and US


Headquartered in Sydney, Australia, Neara, an infrastructure modelling platform that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to create 3D, network-wide models for engineering-grade simulations and analytics, today announced a $10M capital raise extension. The round featured participation by Dutch VC Prosus Ventures (who has invested in unicorns like Delivery Hero and Swiggy) and was supported by Neara’s existing investors, Skip Capital and Square Peg. This increases Neara’s total Series B funding to $24M.

In simple words, Neara combines AI and 3D modelling to provide a powerful tool for engineers, planners, and decision-makers to better design, optimise, and manage complex infrastructures to make sure they’re ready to face extreme climate conditions.

Imagine a big company that provides services like electricity, water, or gas to homes and businesses. Neara uses a special computer program (the model) to pretend and see how their stuff (like power lines and equipment) would act in different situations, like a big storm or an unusually busy day.

These pretend scenarios help them figure out where their weak points are and how to make their systems better at handling tough situations like storms. It also helps them use less people going out to check things manually, which saves time and money.

The company is going to use the latest investment to expand in Europe and the United States too. Also, they’re making it easier for renewable energy sources (like solar or wind power) to connect to the system, so we can use more clean energy with their new “System of Enablement” functionality. 

“Neara’s AI simulation and analytics platform sits at the center of the energy transition to ensure utilities are empowered to make holistic, system-wide decisions. Our System of Enablement delivers one unified model to resolve critical macro issues, from designing stronger grids to mitigating damage caused by catastrophic weather events, as well as bringing renewable energy online faster using existing network infrastructure,” said Neara Chief Commercial Officer Jack Curtis. “Prosus Ventures’ investment accelerates Neara’s System of Enablement development to provide a central decision-making platform for critical stakeholders in the energy transition ecosystem.”

“At Prosus Ventures, we focus on driving a positive impact on society and the planet through our investments. We are thrilled to partner with Neara in fast-tracking the world to a cleaner, safer, and electrified future. We believe in the power of technology to solve the greatest challenges facing us — including action on climate change, affordable access to digital services, and delivery of sustainable products and services,” said Sachin Bhanot, Head of SEA & ANZ Investments, Prosus Ventures.

Neara’s AI platform currently enables utility operators spanning 1M+ square miles and 8M assets in operations to design efficient networks, enhance wildfire and vegetation management programs, as well as bring renewable projects online faster using their existing infrastructure. 

The company also completed a proprietary line rating case study, with EMPACT Engineering, in a fast-growing Central Texas region. Their platform discovered that 94.5% of the lines could safely run at double the current capacity — enabling the integration of significantly more clean energy using existing infrastructure. This precise modelling is more accurate and cost-effective for discovering latent capacity than other legacy line-rating techniques. Similarly, in New South Wales, Australia, Neara partnered with Essential Energy to double their existing network availability through software analytics, increasing the potential for renewable asset connectivity. 

Further, Neara is equally focused on solving the other major network constraints to the energy transition, specifically developing and constructing new transmission lines. With Neara, network utilities can leverage a whole-of-life-cycle network model to enable route optimisation, community engagement, as well as development and construction velocity — ultimately accelerating the speed at which critical renewable infrastructure can be brought online and harnessed to clear renewable project backlogs.

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