Check out the pitch deck Dandelion Energy, a green-energy company that began at Google’s research division X, used to raise $70 million

Headshot of Michael Sachse, CEO Dandelion Energy.
  • Dandelion Energy came out of a project that started years ago at X, Google’s research effort.
  • It designs green energy systems for residential homes and offers financing.
  • It’s raised $136 million, according to PitchBook, from investors like LenX and Breakthrough Energy.

As winter approaches, many homeowners are dreading their heating bills, which, according to the US Department of Energy, may account for more than one-quarter of household costs for energy and other basic services.  

Dandelion Energy could provide a way for homeowners to defray these costs. The startup’s technology designs systems that can capture and transfer energy found in the soil and regulate temperatures in homes. 

In 2015, Dandelion Energy started as a project of what was then known as Google X, now just X, Google’s research arm. It was there that the Dandelion founder Kathy Hannun, a Google product manager at the time, began putting together a business plan for Dandelion Energy, CEO Michael Sachse said. It was spun out in 2017, he added. 

Dandelion Energy has raised a total of about $136 million, according to PitchBook, from investors including LenX, the venture division of the homebuilding company Lennar, according to the company. The $70 million round that the company announced earlier this month was led by LenX and NGP ETP and included other investors, like NEA and Breakthrough Energy Ventures, according to the company. 

The startup’s system is made up of a heat pump linked to something called a ground loop, which comprises plastic piping running underground containing water and antifreeze, Sachse told Insider. Dandelion also uses data it has collected from a variety of sources to help design the ground loop, and it helps calculate the power the heat pump needs, Sachse said. 

“Both of those things reflect the individual characteristics of each home and the soil on which the home sits,” he said. “So we’re able to design that using much more data than anyone else has previously, which allows us to be more accurate in our designs.”

So far, over 1,000 homes in New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts have been fitted with the Dandelion heating system, Sachse said. The company has roughly 230 employees and plans to hire more talent, like product managers and engineers, he said.

“Our goal from the customer standpoint is, you know, one-stop shopping,” Sachse said. “We bring financing options. We bring all the labor. We bring the products — and you get a comfortable, more sustainable, more affordable home as a result.”  

Take a look at the pitch deck Dandelion Energy used to raise $70 million in new funding.

Title slide

Dandelion Energy


Dandelion Energy

Dandelion Energy

This slide is meant to address the challenges of residential heating. The discussion can also evoke the context of the current energy crisis, Sachse said, citing factors like Russia reducing its natural-gas exports to Europe this year amid its invasion of Ukraine.

“Now everyone realizes that we need natural gas to heat our homes,” he said. “But as we pitched this, most investors don’t recognize that heating is just a challenge from a sustainability standpoint, and so our goal is to highlight that.”

The company’s vision

Dandelion Energy

The company has focused its services in parts of the Northeast but has plans to expand. In this slide, it’s outlining what its services can offer customers, Sachse said. 

“We see the energy transition as going nationwide and beyond, and our goal is to be at the center of that,” he said.

Dandelion Energy

An explanation of geothermal-heat pumps

Dandelion Energy

The term “geothermal” can refer to different methods of accessing energy — for instance, plumbing for steam heat deep underground, Sachse said. But that’s not what Dandelion does — the geothermal system it designs refers to a heat-conduction system that moves through the ground near the home, he said.

“It explains that you have a ground loop outside the home buried in the backyard. You have a heat pump inside the home,” he said. “And it connects to existing ductwork in the home.”

The value for customers

Dandelion Energy

This slide emphasizes the ease with which customers can have consultations remotely, as Dandelion can simulate models of the home in question through photographs, Sachse said.

Dandelion also taps into its database of soil-conductivity information, which it has obtained through a variety of means, including from its past installations, he said.

Dandelion Energy

The economic argument for customers

Dandelion Energy

Addressing the up-front costs

Dandelion Energy

This slide is meant to explain some of the up-front costs for customers, especially if they don’t take the financing option, and to demonstrate how the lower operating costs more than make up for it over time, Sachse said. 

“The big advantage of what we’re doing is that it’s incredibly efficient once installed,” he said.

Good customer reviews

Dandelion Energy

“We know that anytime you’re doing something in the home, customers are very sensitive to your performance there,” Sachse said. “And so we’re sharing some of the positive feedback we’ve gotten from customers.”

Dandelion Energy

The market

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“The core point here is energy markets are so large, that even if we only operated in three states, there’s the possibility for an IPO-scale company,” Sachse said. “And yet we think the market potential is so much greater than that.”

Plans to invest

Dandelion Energy

Dandelion Energy
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