Atlassian co-CEO endorses Brighte with a lead role in the fintech startup’s $4m Series A round


Atlassian co-CEO Mike Cannon-Brookes with Brighte founder Katherine McConnell

Atlassian co-founder and co-CEO Mike Cannon-Brookes has thrown his support behind Brighte, leading the home energy fintech’s $4 million Series A round through his venture capital business Grok Ventures.

Based in Sydney, Brighte is a digital credit platform that provides on-the-spot finance for home energy improvements, allowing homeowners to access solar panels, insulation and batteries without incurring the upfront cost of installation, which is typically between $9,000 and $15,000.

Founded by ex-Macquarie manager Katherine McConnell in 2015, Brighte has achieved average growth of 49% month-on-month is its first 10 months of operation.  In addition to severing investment from Grok Ventures, the Series A round saw Brighte’ receive further capital from its seed investors.

McConnell told Dynamic Business that securing investment from Cannon-Brookes,  validates Brighte in three different ways.

“Firstly, the fact that Mike setup [Atlassian] from scratch and turned it into a multi-billion-dollar tech business says to me that he believes we are capable, potentially, of doing the same thing,” she said.

“Secondly, given Mike’s tech background and expertise, the investment was also a real endorsement of the tech platform we have built. Finally, Mike’s a very strong clean energy advocate, so having him endorse us in the energy sector, propelling is with his passion and his brand, is a huge opportunity.”

McConnell said she is meeting Cannon-Brookes on a monthly basis, moving forward, with a view to harnessing his support and mentorship to further develop Brighte’s platform. She added, “Having been through this before he’s able to help me fast-track some of the mistakes I’m potentially going to make.”

Asked how Brighte will be using the Series A capital raise to grow, McConnell replied, “Brighte started off with just myself and it grew to eight people in the first year. Within a month, we’ll have our 34th staff member. We’ll be using the funding for talent acquisition, to develop the origination channels in Australia and to further accelerate the development of our tech platform.”