Legal & General and Hodge invest £5.5m into Sero Technologies
Legal & General Capital and Hodge have announced a £5.5million investment into Sero Technologies, an energy technology and services company supporting the transition to net-zero across the residential housing sector.
Sero has developed digital tools and expertise to design and deliver cost-effective, low-carbon solutions for both new build and existing homes.
Sero works with landlords, mortgage lenders, housebuilders and more, to plot a pathway to net zero for their homes, providing the option of ongoing optimisation to ensure a good outcome for customers.
With over 10,000 new build and existing homes within its identified pipeline, Sero has worked within the housing sector, creating tailored net-zero energy retrofit plans for homes, assuring them using building passports and managing them using its smart home energy management system, ‘The BEE’ (Building Energy Engine) and comfort-based service model.
Sero has initially focused on working with social housing providers facing major challenges around regulation and funding, as they look to meet net-zero targets. Legal & General and Hodge’s investment will support Sero in its next stage of growth, as well as its aims to support the delivery net zero financial products with institutional partners.
Legal & General invests its capital in clean energy infrastructure, businesses and technologies to help accelerate progress towards a low-cost, low-carbon economy, working with local authorities, government and key industry players to create scaled solutions.
Hodge, which is 79% owned by the Hodge Foundation, is a specialist in mortgages, commercial finance and savings. This is the second major investment in less than a year for Cardiff-based Hodge as the bank looks to grow its investment portfolio in line with its ethos of using banking for good.
John Bromley, Head of Clean Energy at Legal & General Capital, said: “Housing is a major contributor to carbon emissions, requiring some of the most challenging and immediate overhauls of any sector. We are delighted, therefore, to be investing in a business that will play a major role in putting UK housing on a pathway to net zero, whilst providing significant job creation in the clean energy sector and supporting the UK’s SMEs. As an energy transition investor, we are aiming to support the scale up of innovative businesses capable of delivering the solutions needed to reduce emissions throughout the economy, and Sero represents another perfect partner for us in this space. We look forward to working with the Sero team to grow their innovative business as well as utilising their expertise across our own housing platform.
James Williams, Chief Executive Officer at Sero said: “The challenge of upgrading existing housing stock is growing as the urgency of solving the climate emergency becomes even greater. Improving the energy efficiency of our homes can provide long term economic benefit and comfort to residents, as well as reducing carbon emissions. This investment therefore is a huge milestone for Sero as we grow and bring new products to market to help the UK in its delivery of net zero.
“We set out to find investors that share our vision, and this has been evident from both the Legal & General and Hodge teams from the outset. We look forward to now working together to create strategic opportunities for the business, in particular expanding our presence within new and emerging sectors, such as working with banks and building societies to support the development of green finance products.”
Later this spring Sero will be launching its industry leading Building Passport, a digital app that allows homeowners to gain a greater understanding of the carbon footprint of their home, how they can make it more energy efficient, and track the progress of the home on its pathway to net zero. This follows recommendations last year from the Coalition for the Energy Efficiency of Buildings (CEEB) for developing a standardised framework for Building Renovation Plans in the UK, to enable property owners to access digital information to help inform how they retrofit their home.