Exceleron and PayGo Announce Merger

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Combination improves affordability, engagement, choice, and revenue assurance for electric, water, and gas utilities in North America, Asia Pacific, and Latin American Markets.

DALLAS, May 21, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Exceleron Software and PayGo Utilities today announced they have merged their business operations and formed Empower Grid Holdings ("EGH") with financial backing from Moore Strategic Ventures, Bahman Hoveida's Accurant International LLC, and Avista Development, Inc., a wholly owned, non-regulated subsidiary of Avista Corp. With the combination of Exceleron's dominant presence in the municipal power market and PayGo's leadership position serving large investor-owned and public power utilities, Empower Grid Holdings' scale and experience will better serve the growing affordability needs of utilities and their customers as part of the Energy Transition. Both companies are active in international markets, including Exceleron's existing team and pipeline in the rapidly evolving Indian prepay market. The companies will continue to market under their respective brands.

The Market Leading Utility Prepay and Payment Services Company

Exceleron CEO and Founder, Bob Crenshaw, will serve as Executive Chair & Co-CEO with PayGo CEO, Jeff Weiser serving as Co-CEO and Ravi Raju as COO. 

"This is a timely opportunity to accelerate innovation for the 75+ utilities and their customers served by the combined entity across 23 states. Both teams deliver solutions driving higher engagement, energy savings, and extremely high customer satisfaction. There is no limit to what we can do together to deliver the right outcomes for the combined customer base as the utility industry faces growing demand requirements, rising costs, and higher customer expectations." said Bob Crenshaw.  

"Energy and water utilities need affordable billing and payments solutions that help customers control energy and water spend. Both companies' prepay programs lower customer energy costs by as much as 15% while delivering customer satisfaction that is significantly higher than traditional billing. We are excited about offering customers new features from Exceleron, and expanding our impact on energy choice and efficiency," said Jeff Weiser.

Hunter Horgan of Moore Strategic Ventures, EGH's lead investor, said "The best way to afford the energy transition is by empowering all consumers with better choices and more control over how and when they use energy. We are excited to have Avista Development, Inc. join the investor group and look forward to working with the combined teams from PayGo and Exceleron to reach their full potential." 

"Utilities are looking to more frequently and effectively engage with their customers and pre-payment provides this platform with substantially increased customer satisfaction" said Bahman Hoveida, President of Accurant International. "Engaging with all customers to reduce peak events on grid assets will ultimately lower the cost for grid participants." 

"For more than a decade JEA has utilized Exceleron's prepay solution to empower our customers with billing options and greater choice," said Sheila Pressley, Chief Customer Officer at JEA. "We are delighted that the new company will be well positioned to deliver outcomes that could result in greater customer satisfaction."

"Salt River Project's M-Power prepay option has long helped our customers manage their payments and reduce their energy use. We look forward to the opportunities this merger brings to grow and innovate our M-Power program for the benefit of our customers," said Vanessa Kisicki, Salt River Project Associate General Manager and Chief Customer Officer.

Empower Grid Holding's legal advisor on this transaction was DLA Piper. 

About Exceleron SoftwareWith over 60 utility customers, Exceleron Software is one of North America's leading utility prepay and payment service companies.  Exceleron's MyUsage® is a cloud-based software-as-a-service solution focused on prepay, consumer engagement, integrated consumer messaging, and integrated payments. MyUsage has been utilized by electric, water and gas utilities to increase energy affordability for consumers. On average, MyUsage consumers realize 10-15% energy conservation and efficiency improvements while the utilizes can reduce write-offs and outstanding debt by more than 70%. Consumers have more access to detailed information about their energy consumption and greater control over the amount, frequency, and methods of payment. This increases customer choice, improves customer satisfaction, and significantly lowers financial risk for utilities.  More information available at www.exceleron.com

About PayGoPayGo® is a software company focused solely on utilities and their customers. The platform enables prepay and full stack payment services to America's largest investor-owned and public power utilities. PayGo enables higher customer engagement, affordability, satisfaction, and sustainability, while improving revenue assurance. Utility customers gain control in how they manage and pay for their energy and water spend, along with ways to reduce consumption. The Company's Cloud CIS product helps municipal utilities to provide integrated postpay and prepay billing, and payment processing across all utility services. PayGo processes customer cash payments through its single proprietary bar code for all utility customers at the checkout counter at 85,000 retail locations including Kroger, Dollar General, Family Dollar, CVS, Walmart and other retailers.  More information is available at www.paygoutilities.com.

About Exceleron IndiaFounded in 2012 in Bengaluru, India, Exceleron India supports the development and maintenance of Exceleron Software's MyUsage solution. Although originally established as a software engineering company, the company has recently started selling the MyUsage software into the Indian market.  As India suffers from the largest non-technical loss (i.e. theft) of electricity in the world at roughly 24%, the Government of India has issued a regulatory mandate for the implementation of 250 million prepaid smart meters which are also eligible for subsidized costs and are supported by existing MyUsage functionality. Exceleron India is actively in sales discussions with Indian utilities about implementing MyUsage with first deployments expected in 2024. At 250 million customers, India represents the largest prepay market in the World.

About Moore Strategic VenturesMoore Strategic Ventures, LLC is the privately held investment company for Louis M. Bacon, Founder and CEO of Moore Capital Management, LP.

About Empower Grid Holdings Empower Grid Holdings (EGH) is a platform company created by Moore Strategic Ventures (Sponsor) and Accurant International (Co-Investor) in December 2022 with a specific focus on the electric utility software sector. EGH's mission is to acquire and consolidate smaller software companies that specialize in solutions for enhancing customer engagement and billing processes within the electric utility industry.

About Accurant InternationalAccurant International offers solutions, technologies, and services to help utility and corporate clients implement projects and solutions related to digital transformation, grid modernization, energy efficiency, grid resiliency, maintenance & asset management, EV management & demand response, and renewable integration. Accurant invests in and advises climate-tech companies in their solutions development and go-to-market and sales strategies. Accurant has a global team of industry seasoned sales directors who promote portfolio technologies to utility partners. They lead and execute solution sales strategies to IOUS,    Munis, Coops and Fortune 100 companies.  For more information, visit www.accurantllc.com.

About Avista DevelopmentAvista Development, Inc., a wholly owned, non-regulated subsidiary of Avista Corp. (NYSE: AVA), invests in early-stage, strategic companies as well as strategic limited partnerships in clean tech funds, that help inform the Utility of the future for Avista and its stakeholders.

Avista is an energy company involved in the production, transmission, and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. Avista Utilities is its operating division, providing electricity to nearly 418,000 customers and natural gas to about 382,000 customers across 30,000 square miles and four northwestern states. Avista's history of innovations is rooted in in the renewable energy we've generated since our founding in 1889.

Avista has been recognized for the fifth time by Ethisphere, a global leader in defining and advancing the standards of ethical business practices, as one of the 2024 World's Most Ethical Companies.

Media ContactsExceleron: |media@exceleron.com PayGo: |media@paygoutilities.com

The Market Leading Utility Prepay and Payment Services Company

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