Digest: Q4 2019

Neil Williams

06 Dec 2019

As we head into the festive period, it looks like 2019 will close nicely despite the Brexit circus and long term concerns about the environment.

Promotional activity at tilix.energy continues to go from strength to strength. It has been great fun to put together this post which gives a flavour of what is floating our boat at the moment.

On the performance side, a couple of important deals closed recently:

  • Farringdon Energy have retained Tilix to guide them into GB electricity supply market.
  • EDF acquired Pivot Power (one of the tilix.energy angel investments).

EDF’s acquisition of Pivot Power was a major milestone. Matt Allen, Mikey Clark and Matthew Boulton now have the backing they need to deliver their ambitious goals. This is wind in the sails for tilix.energy impact investing and an inspiration for other entrepreneurs in the energy, mobility and cleantech space.

District heating, Stirling engines and electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure funded by advertising are topics that are increasingly popping up on the tilix.energy radar.

Ongoing changes in Ofgem’s regulation of the GB gas and electricity markets continue to create headlines and create advisory work for the tilix.energy team.

Market insights

Flexible energy, mobility, decarbonisation and renewable energy are the key themes from the industry media which have been drawing attention. The digest below gives a taste of the regular updates you can find on the tilix.energy LinkedIn page.

Ofgem’s proposed reforms are divisive

Reforms to the collection of levies and fees from end-users of the electric grid are proving to be divisive. Whilst it makes sense to many stakeholders, figures from across the UK’s distributed energy sector have heavily criticised Ofgem’s proposals. They have been slammed as “damaging” to the business case for renewable generation and flexible assets.

Shell supports sustainable aviation fuel plant

Shell’s aviation fuel arm is to support Europe’s first dedicated sustainable aviation fuel production plant in the Netherlands. Shell will bring its global operational experience and technical expertise to help accelerate the project.

Electric car future may depend on deep sea mining

Demand is soaring for cobalt because of its use in the fast growing EV market. This metal is an essential ingredient in batteries and is abundant in rocks on the seabed. Therefore, future cobalt extraction may depend on mining on the ocean floor.

Flexible green energy delivered in Cornwall

A fully automated Local Energy Market (LEM) in Cornwall has for the first time seen the local Distribution System Operator (DSO) and the National Grid ESO procure flexible green energy from businesses and households simultaneously.

Poo and power to decarbonise HGVs

The race to electrify road haulage is heating up globally with a host of companies around the world starting to deploy both plug-in hybrid and pure electric trucks. Two competing methods of tackling the climate impact of Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) launched recently in the UK: one based on electrification and the other on biogas made from manure.

Event calendar

Start-up pitch events, e-mobility expos and network innovation conferences are regular fixtures in the tilix.energy calendar.

Baker Botts Cleantech Pitches

Tuesday, 15 October 2019 at Baker Botts London. The evening featured a number of energy, mobility and cleantech companies presenting their business for five minutes each, followed by two minutes of Q&A from the audience and panel. Prizes were awarded by Baker Botts Partner, Neil Foster, to Iceotope as the most fundable company and ZapGo for the best presentation.

LCNI

The Low Carbon Networks & Innovation (LCNI) Conference showcases emerging technology, processes and business models in the UK gas and electricity networks. In particular, there are many presentations from projects awarded under the Network Innovation Allowance (NIA) and Network Innovation Collaboration (NIC) funding mechanisms.

The LCNI Conference (30-31 Oct 2019 in Glasgow) lived up to its billing as the go-to event for network innovation in the UK. In 2019 the focus was on electricity and the conference theme was empowering new energy innovators. The next event will take place on 3-4 November 2020 at ACC Liverpool.

Hub2019

The conference is organised by the Energy Competence Center. Keynotes from industry movers and shakers were combined with a Dragons’ Den competition. About 20 start-ups and scale-ups competed for funded project collaborations with ABB and Mälarenergi. Everyone was a winner but only Eneryield and Envista shared the prize money.

Start-ups from SynerLeap, the innovation growth hub which connects start-ups and scale-ups with ABB, were there in force. Those that caught the tilix.energy eye included Disruptive Technologies, Ekkono, GreenlyticsRenbloc and Vathos.

eCarExpo

eCarExpo brings the best of e-mobility to Gothenburg, Oslo, Stockholm and Copenhagen. Under a single roof you can find the latest in electric bikes, scooters, cars and vans. There are also exhibits from charging technology vendors and keynotes from industry experts. The icing on the cake is the test drive facilities including an in situ test track for scooters and a selection of cars to take onto the city streets.

Nordic EV summit

23-24 April 2020 in Oslo, Norway. Participants from all over the world will attend the 4th annual Nordic EV Summit and Expo of Electric Vehicles for their biggest event to date:

  • 1,000 participants
  • 50 sponsors
  • 80 speakers
  • 40 different countries represented

Green Tech Challenge

Green Innovation Group connects corporations and investors with impact technology in sustainability. The firm has a five-year track record hosting Growth Sprint Programmes together with relevant players in the local markets around the globe.

GI London 2020 will be held on 15 May at The Royal Society. Friends of tilix.energy are eligible for 40% discount on tickets. The attendee landscape will consist of 15+ LPs, 30+ VCs, 20+ Private Equity Funds, 8 Impact start-ups on stage, 100+ service providers, 90+ entrepreneurs and many more.

Innovation to watch

Start-ups and scale-ups which make credible claims to being the next big thing come regularly onto the tilix.energy radar. They are not lab projects or skunk works. Rather they are businesses which could scale and are growing, have sales/marketing and are leveraging partnerships to design, build and operate their disruptive value propositions. The ones listed below are getting attention from early stage business angels and venture capitalists.

Eneryield

Eneryield won the ABB prize at the Hub2019 Dragons’ Den competition. This Gothenburg-based start-up provides machine learning algorithms for intelligent energy analytics and control of electricity flow. The founders are experts in machine learning algorithms for long and short term predictions of energy, applicable to many different settings. For example: smart grids, intelligent power electronics and predictive maintenance.

ENVISTA

Envista won the Mälarenergi prize at the Hub2019 Dragons’ Den competition. Based in Linköping, Sweden, this start-up will contribute to reducing energy use for building heating by assisting customers in strategic energy work with a standardised analysis service that shows the stock’s potential for savings and development over time.

Iceotope

Iceotope was voted the most fundable company by the panel and audience at the Baker Botts Cleantech Pitch Event. This Sheffield-based scale-up offers cutting-edge liquid cooling technology for electronics and the ICT industry. Designed and manufactured in the UK, the patented technology claims to deliver greater efficiency through improved size, noise, cost and energy consumption.

ZapGo

ZapGo was voted the best presentation by the panel and audience at the Baker Botts Cleantech Pitch Event. ZapGo is based in Oxford, UK, and is developing lithium and cobalt free energy storage for the mass deployment of electric and autonomous vehicles. ZapGo technology offers the potential of EV chargers working 10x faster than existing Tesla superchargers.

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