Drive Technologies Inc., doing business as Treehouse, raised the funds from a group of venture capital firms, which was led by Montage Ventures and Trucks Venture Capital and included Invest Detroit and Detroit Venture Partners.
Treehouse home EV charging startup raises $10 million
The company's value proposition is making the installation process less cumbersome. Users can sign up for the installation, compare prices of different charging rigs and maximize consumer rebates and incentives.
The funding will help the company expand operations and build on its staff of 18, which includes software engineers, electricians and customer service professionals, said Eric Owski, CEO and co-founder of Treehouse who lives in Detroit. The fundraising round marks a breakthrough for the 2-year-old startup.
"What's unique about our vision and approach to the market … we are delivering the jobs ourselves," Owski said. "We own the customer experience end to end, and we deliver the job through licensed electricians who work for Treehouse."
The company's value proposition is making the installation process less cumbersome, according to Owski. Users can sign up for the installation, compare prices of different charging rigs and maximize consumer rebates and incentives on Treehouse's website.
"There's not a series of hand-offs between different companies in the marketplace," he said. "It's a turnkey experience."
Owski would not disclose financials but said he expects the company will reach profitability by the end of next year.
Treehouse joins a rush of startups looking to capitalize on the automotive industry's electric revolution. On the EV charging side alone there has been an investment boom as companies look to fill in the infrastructure shortfalls straining the shift to EVs.
"The power of transparent charger installation pricing is going to change how consumers shop for and buy EVs," Reilly Brennan, partner at Trucks Venture, said in a news release. "Treehouse is removing a barrier to EV ownership and making it easier for millions of consumers across the country to switch to EVs."
Treehouse does direct-to-consumer business but is also pitching auto dealers to make Treehouse their go-to EV charging partner for electric car buyers. The startup can install home charging stations for all manufacturers and is licensed to operate in California, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, Illinois and a handful of other states.
Owski said Treehouse will launch service in Michigan by the end of the year. The CEO founded the company with a group of colleagues from LinkedIn in Silicon Valley. Owski moved to Detroit during the COVID-19 pandemic to be closer to home.
Basing the company in the city also better allows it to plug into the automotive industry, he said. The company envisions Detroit, Chicago and California as being its main bases of operation. Owski is the only employee based in Detroit, but he expects to add more soon.
"We're committed to having a presence here, and we hope it will be a significant one," he said. "We don't yet know exactly what that's going to look like."
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