Gates and Khosla Invest in Varentec Power-Management Technology

Varentec Inc., a designer of power-management systems and software, arranged $8 million in funding from billionaire Bill Gates and Khosla Ventures.

Varentec plans to use the Series B funding to finance initial production and sales of grid-control systems that help utilities correct voltage imbalances that may result from spikes in consumption or clouds passing over solar plants, the San Jose, California-based company said today in a statement.

“Our smart-power nodes have the muscle to move the voltage instantly,” Chief Executive Officer Deepak Divan said in an interview. “Utilities have no tools to control these fluctuations. These funds will help us get to bigger deployments.”

Billionaire Vinod Khosla’s Khosla Ventures led Varentec’s $7.7 million Series A funding round in December 2011, and the company also has received funds from the U.S. Energy Department.

Varantec uses capacitors to temporarily boost or reduce voltage on utility distribution systems, and to notify grid operators of any potential disturbances.

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