Software startups from Houston to Australia Dominate New Surge Class

2/17/14Follow @angelashah

Houston cleantech accelerator Surge kicked off its third class Monday, with startups that aim to source and sell energy capacity and digitize oilfield operations, among other innovations.

Surge, which launched three years ago, is the nation’s only accelerator geared to the cleantech sector. It has catered to startups in upstream imaging and modeling, digitizing operational workflows, and processes to make energy development and delivery more efficient.

This year, the accelerator fielded applications from each continent—save Antarctica—and the U.S.-based startups will be joined by those from Chile, Australia, France, and Canada. The accelerator considered more than 600 startups this year before picking the final 11 companies.

Surge gives each company $30,000 in funding, and may also invest up to $50,000 in optional convertible notes in each startup. In return, the accelerator takes 6 percent of the company’s equity.

In the last two years, Surge’s alumni have raised $25 million in funding and created more than 150 jobs, says Melanie Jones, director of marketing. Twenty-one out of 23 companies are still operating. The 12-week program ends with a demo day in May.

Here are the startups in the accelerator’s new class:

10Six (New York)—Startup that sources energy capacity in the grid and sells the aggregated energy capacity to power companies to maintain grid stability.

Autonomous Marine Systems (Washington, D.C.)—A marine hardware and data company that aims to use an autonomous ocean surface drone to build the world’s first global water-borne intelligent sensor network and data distribution channel.

Clear Creek Networks (Boulder, CO)—Startup that aims to use software networking to create a fully-automated network management system to the aging electrical grid’s data networks.

Cold Futures (Chicago)—Electricity-pricing software company that uses the quantitative mathematics of commodities trading to control power loads in dynamic electricity pricing.

Greasebook (Oklahoma City, OK)—An oil and gas software company that gets rid of paper gauge sheets by offering mobile oilfield management options for independent energy operators.

Petrabytes (Houston)—Upstream energy software company that uses real-time data analysis to optimize drilling and production.

Project Insiders (Houston)—Software company that provides a platform for energy supply chain companies to navigate buy-sell exchanges in large capital investment projects.

renooble (Portland, OR/Santiago, Chile)—Startup that sells software that calculates energy retrofit options with an estimated return on investment for consumers, installers, and utilities.

SEE Forge (San Francisco/Perth, Australia)—Oil and gas software company that eliminates paperwork and spreadsheets to manage non-traditional operations workflow processes with cloud-based “fat-finger” app.

Seisquare (Fontainebleau, France)—An upstream software company that applies geostatistics to geophysical workflows for oil and gas companies to produce accurate subsurface images.

Simulation Appliance (Calgary, Canada)—Cloud-based software company that is developing a platform to simulate engineering processes.

Angela Shah is the editor of Xconomy Texas. She can be reached at ashah@xconomy.com or (214) 793-5763. Follow @angelashah

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