Fortress Fund invests in Versiro: "We help power producers master uncertainty in the electricity market"

The software company Versiro aims to accelerate the energy transition with the help of an AI copilot that assists renewable energy producers in making smart decisions.

"While we were writing our doctoral theses, we observed technological advancements in the production of renewable energy, primarily solar and wind. However, because solar and wind power are variable, there is a lot of uncertainty, leading to greater unpredictability in the power system. This unpredictability needs better planning for power producers," says Simon Risanger, CEO of Versiro. Versiro.

The startup was founded about a year and a half ago as a result of the observations made by Risanger and co-founder Markus Löschenbrand while working on their respective PhD degrees at NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology), specializing in Industrial Economics and Technology Management, and Electric Power Systems. In their efforts to commercialize their research, they created Versiro.

"We have a realistic approach to the green transition because we go directly to the producers and tell them that they can achieve better economic results by utilizing renewable energy and flexibility more effectively," notes Löschenbrand, who is Versiro's Chief Technology Officer (CTO).

Artificial intelligence at the core

In short, the company offers a platform based on artificial intelligence (AI) that helps renewable energy producers plan when there is uncertainty in pricing and production.

"The solution is a self-developed AI model that takes in a lot of data, including fundamental data about the power system, how electricity flows, etc., as well as fundamental weather data, renewable energy forecasts, temperature, etc., and market data. Based on that, we create a representation of how uncertainties exist in the market. With the help of this representation, it's possible to create an optimal plan for managing your portfolio as a power producer," explains Risanger.

Versiro assists power producers in managing uncertainties in the market. Here, the founders explain their solution during a meeting with the Fortress Fund investors.

Today, Versiro has a product ready for testing in the market. Three out of the top ten power producers in Norway are piloting their beta version, and the response has been very positive.

"We require minimal integration into their internal systems to get started, and they quickly reap the benefits of using our solution. For example, hydropower producers can utilize their water more efficiently," says Risanger.

The fund manager predicts success

According to Lorenzo Ruscelli, CEO of Fortress Fund, Versiro scores highly on many of the factors the fund's investment committee looks for.

"They have a strong team with backgrounds in technology and natural sciences, as well as business sense. I also believe our expertise is a good match with the Versiro team," comments Ruscelli. He further elaborates:

"They target the energy market, which is large, growing, and international. It's also a market we understand very well at Fortress Fund, and therefore, we can contribute something concrete."

Fortress Fund Manager Ruscelli (left) and Versiro Manger Risanger are happy to collaborate.

Ruscelli believes that Versiro can generate significant profits, have an impact on the environment, and create jobs in Norway, which, when combined, spell success.  

"Versiro is going to be one of the stars in the fund's portfolio," he emphasizes.

A crucial supporter

Risanger and Löschenbrand agree that their company fits well with the fund. The investment not only allows Versiro to further its vision of accelerating the green transition in Norway, but Fortress Fund is precisely the missing piece to make it happen.

"When we conducted our investment round, we considered several investors. We concluded that Fortress Fund, with its combination of industry expertise, the people in the fund, and its connections to strong energy-related communities, was a particularly good match for us. In addition to providing us with capital to grow, they offer a vast network and relevant expertise. This enables us to avoid many pitfalls because we can lean on experience built up by others," Risanger points out.

Ultimately, Versiro aims to expand beyond Norway's borders and into the European market.