Funding / Housing / Startups

Pearl Certification completes $4M financing round

The Charlottesville, Va.-based startup said it plans to use the funding to expand its operations to become the national standard for home certification in the U.S.

Charlottesville, Va.-based Pearl Certification announced that it has closed on a $4 million financing round, as part of a Series A. This includes a $1.85 million investment from Massachusetts-based Clean Energy Ventures (CEV), Pearl Director of Communications Lindsay Bachman told

Launched in 2015, Pearl Certification is a national firm that provides a third-party certification to home sellers that shows how energy efficient a home is across multiple platforms. The certification is currently available for contractor licensing nationwide in 20 states. The startup plans to use the funding to expand its operation to become the national standard for home certification in the U.S.

You may recognize this company from the Vinetta Project’s first semifinalist showcase in March. Pearl CEO Cynthia Adams pitched her venture and ultimately earned a spot at the final showcase in September where an overall winner will receive a $20,000 cash prize.

Pearl’s certification system includes an inventory of a home’s energy efficiency, health, comfort and other performance assets to certify a home as “high-performing,” the press release states. The 1,200-point scoring methodology certifies a home as asset, silver, gold or platinum.

“We view Pearl’s solution as an integral part of motivating residential energy efficiency improvements, a market with extensive opportunity that has yet to be realized,” David Miller, CEV managing director, said in a statement. “We believe Pearl can unleash broad efficiency improvements with corresponding greenhouse gas emissions reductions, and become a national standard which homeowners, contractors, and real estate agents will readily understand.”

Pearl President and COO Robin LeBaron said that the startup is also looking to explore potential partnerships with manufacturers, utilities and other companies in CEV’s network and portfolio.

“We’re delighted to have the confidence and support of this highly reputable and mission-aligned investment fund,” Adams said in the news release. “Pearl has made impressive progress on all fronts over the past year and CEV’s investment signals a recognition by the venture community that the company is ready to scale.”

Outside of CEV, Pearl has also secured investments for this financing from Second Century Ventures, Dave Pogue, former global director of corporate responsibility at CBRE, Steve Morgan, board director for ACEEE and and Andrew Tobias, best-selling author and former DNC treasurer. Pearl has raised $7.35 million to date, Bachman said.

Projects: The Vinetta Project

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