Banking & Finance  June 30, 2015

Lightning Hybrids raises $2M in new capital to help fuel growth

LOVELAND — Lightning Hybrids LLC has raised $2 million in new equity funding as part of what company officials hope will ultimately be a $10 million round by the end of the year.

The Loveland-based maker of hybrid systems for medium- and heavy-duty fleet vehicles disclosed the new funds in a regulatory filing made this week. Vice president of marketing Bonnie Trowbridge said Tuesday that the funds came mostly from current investors.

The cash infusion comes as the company continues to grow domestically and also sniff out new markets internationally.

Lightning Hybrids in April opened a subsidiary in London and kicked off pilot programs with a pair of large unnamed clients, including a food-delivery company and a worldwide package-delivery company. Another big pilot is being launched for a client in Turkey this month, and Trowbridge said that the company also has its eye on Brazil, Canada and Mexico.

The company has recorded about $2.5 million in sales so far this year, but company officials said in April that they’re projecting $23.5 million for 2016 as clients doing pilot programs last year and this year start purchasing hybrid systems — at a cost of roughly $16,000 to $30,000 each — for larger portions of their truck fleets.

Clients in the United States include Kiessling Transport, which provides shuttle service for health-care transport; AmeriPride, a linen-delivery company; and MV Transport, which runs buses for the Regional Transportation District as a contractor. Kiessling has put in a pair of major orders with Lightning Hybrids for a total of 68 systems, while Lightning Hybrids is doing a pilot run for MV Transport now with a pair of buses on the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s campus in Golden.

Lightning Hybrids is adding manpower to handle the growth. After growing from 14 to 31 employees in 2014, the company had reached 38 by April. Trowbridge said that number is now more than 40 and will be at 50 quickly. She said she expects that the company will have 50 employees in the United States, mostly in Loveland, and 60 overall by the end of the year.

It’s not likely to need extra space any time soon, however. The company’s headquarters is at 319 Cleveland Ave., with its 18,000-square-foot manufacturing facility a couple of blocks away. Because the systems are built in Loveland and then shipped out for local installation by dealers and contractors, Trowbridge said the company is doing all right with the space it has for now.

Correction: This story originally misidentified the location of NREL as Loveland instead of Golden.

LOVELAND — Lightning Hybrids LLC has raised $2 million in new equity funding as part of what company officials hope will ultimately be a $10 million round by the end of the year.

The Loveland-based maker of hybrid systems for medium- and heavy-duty fleet vehicles disclosed the new funds in a regulatory filing made this week. Vice president of marketing Bonnie Trowbridge said Tuesday that the funds came mostly from current investors.

The cash infusion comes as the company continues to grow domestically and also sniff out new markets internationally.

Lightning Hybrids in April opened a…

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