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Ecosummit Berlin 2015 takes place on 19-20 May 2015 at the Radialsystem

Ecosummit TV: We are very happy to announce our 9th conference Ecosummit Berlin 2015 taking place on 19-20 May 2015 at the Radialsystem – the best event location in Europe’s leading smart green city for startups. As a warm up, we share the opening of ECO14 Berlin on Ecosummit TV. Last year, the theme of Ecosummit was Accelerating Smart Green Startups. We believe that everybody should think and act like an accelerator trying to reduce capital and time to market while growing the team and revenues faster. This is what our industry needs: Faster startups and bigger exits. While a fast and small exit that results in an aquihire for the buyer may be a good thing, what VCs and LPs really want are big exits by big startups that have big economic and ecological impact. To make big exits happen, founders and their investors have to constantly work on the 4 success factors of startups: People, capital, product and customers. Only if you have the best team, enough capital, a competitive product and lots of happy customers, you are able to become a global market leader. At ECO15 Berlin on 19-20 May 2015, we will continue to work together on accelerating smart green startups aiming at big exits.

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Alexander Zosel gives an update on the development of their electric Volocopter VC200

Ecosummit TV: Alexander Zosel gives an update on the development of their electric Volocopter VC200 at ECO13 London. E-volo was founded in 2011, was funded by the founders with €450K and raised €1.2M in an amazing crowdfunding round on Seedmatch in November 2013. Moreover, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy granted €2M to contribute to the multi-company project development budget. The first unmanned test flight of the 2-seater VC200 was carried out on 17 November 2013 in Karlsruhe. Currently, E-volo works on the temporary certification from the German aviation authority for their ultralight aircraft (maximum takeoff weight of 450 kg) to start manned test flights. Initially targeting the aerial sports market E-volo has the vision to become a global market leader for urban aviation in the next 10 years. Risk-friendly VCs that love high-tech made in Germany and electric aviation should get in touch with Alex. Full disclosure: Ecosummit is one of E-volo’s crowd investors.

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Rune Wendelbo pitches Graphene Batteries from Norway

Ecosummit TV: Graphene is a very promising material that won the Nobel prize in 2010. CTO Rune Wendelbo pitches Graphene Batteries from Norway at ECO13 London. The Oslo-based startup targets the market for batteries in transportation that is forecasted to be $21B in 2020 and develops the active material on the cathode, a key component that represents 25% of the value of the battery. Rune and his team claim that their Graphene-LFP (Lithium Iron Phosphate) composite for the cathode promises increased energy density, lifetime, safety as well as non-toxic production. On a lab scale Graphene Batteries achieved proof of concept but they still need to demonstrate that their manufacturing process is scalable. To establish the pilot production Rune wants to raise $2.2M and thinks that an exit to a chemical corporate with a strong position in the battery business could happen within 3 years.

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Gina Domanig chats with Jan Michael Hess about being a smart green VC

Ecosummit TV: Gina Domanig is a pioneer of cleantech venture capital. She got started in 2000 after a tempting call from a headhunter. Since then, Zurich-based Emerald Technology Ventures raised 3 funds and has got €370M of assets under management. Gina likes being a smart green VC because it is a multi-dimensional job involving technology, finance, industrial applications, transactions and, most importantly, lots of smart and inspiring people. It is also a tough job because you have to be available all the time for your portfolio and LPs. Gina travels almost every week, spends 50% of her time with the portfolio companies and the rest with investors, dealflow and fund management. In today’s environment, VCs have to be very involved in securing the ongoing financing of a startup, helping them recruit the best team and making the connections with the relevant corporates who may become customers, partners or even acquirers when it’s time for an exit. Next to the startups, the real customers of the VC are the investors. The majority of Emerald’s LPs are corporates whose key motivation for fund investments is fostering open innovation. There is a lot to learn from Gina and we are grateful that she joined ECO14 Berlin.

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Eugen Mayer pitches Power Plus Communications

Ecosummit TV: Eugen Mayer pitches Power Plus Communications (PPC) at ECO13 London. The Mannheim-based late stage startup provides broadband powerline (BPL) communication systems in electricity networks and is very active in the smart grid and smart meter rollouts in Germany and UK, their 2 most important markets. Applications such as smart street lighting could communicate over PPC’s powerline technology, too. PPC is a fabless startup with 50 employees that is backed by Climate Change Capital, British Gas and Siemens Venture Capital. Power Plus Communications seems to be well positioned to benefit from the growing smart grid market and we are curious to see who will eventually buy this company.

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Felix Krause pitches Milk the Sun

Ecosummit TV: Felix Krause pitches Milk the Sun at ECO13 London. Since their launch at ECO12 Berlin the German startup made a lot of progress in a very short period of time. Milk the Sun rolled out globally their online marketplace for PV systems that matches old investors (sellers) and new investors (buyers) of existing or planned PV assets by creating a so-called secondary market. More than 1 GW in PV projects looking for new investors are listed on the web-based platform. This brings liquidity to a large but intransparent market where feed-in-tariffs and investments are valid for 20 years. In January 2014, Milk the Sun raised a seed round from Gründerfonds Münsterland (managed by Ecapital) and co-investor Howaldt Energies. As Milk the Sun is cash-flow positive since 2013 we expect a lot more interest from European cleantech VCs in their next round.

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Josef Brunner tells the growth story of JouleX and his successful exit to Cisco

Ecosummit TV: Serial entrepreneur Josef Brunner tells the growth story of JouleX and his successful $107M cash exit to Cisco in 2013. Josef founded JouleX in Munich in 2009 and was backed by Target Partners from early on. Being a 100% energy management software startup that helps companies save OPEX by switching off unused IP devices, Josef and Olaf Jacobi, his board member at Target Partners, quickly decided that the headquarter should be transferred to the US while keeping the software development team in Germany. As a US company it is easier to sell to American customers, raise more money for faster startup development and ultimately sell to an American buyer. Tom Noonan, Co-Founder of Internet Security Systems that he sold to IBM in 2006, invested in JouleX and joined as CEO in 2010. From there it was all about managing fast growth and winning new customers that enjoy instant savings without setup fees while JouleX enjoys a 30% share of the money saved. Josef appreciates the professional integration processes at Cisco who are very experienced buyers due to a long history of successful acquisitions – JouleX was Cisco’s acquisition number 166. Now you may talk to Josef if you need a smart green software business angel.

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James Johnston pitches Open Utility

Ecosummit TV: James Johnston pitches Open Utility at ECO13 London. The London-based smart green startup was accelerated by Bethnal Green Ventures in 2013 and recently entered Open Data Institute‘s startup programme. Open Utility creates an online marketplace for buying and selling distributed renewable energy. The idea is that energy consumers can buy electricity directly from local energy producers. However, wholesale energy markets were never designed for millions of independent producers. As a first step, Open Utility launched their website to help electricity producers sell their export power by getting quotes for a PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) from utilities. We believe that Open Utility’s vision of a peer-2-peer energy marketplace makes a lot of sense and recommend that you put the startup on your watchlist, too.

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Rolf Adam of Cisco talks about new business models for public lighting by making it intelligent

Ecosummit TV: Smart green cities need intelligent lighting. At ECO13 London, Rolf Adam of Cisco talks about new business models for public lighting by making it intelligent. IP-based lighting infrastructure reduces OPEX by remotely managing and metering a large network of street lamps. When cities and utilities plan to upgrade public lighting to energy-efficient LEDs, they should also think about new business models that are enabled by the internet, sensors and smart algorithms. For example, the Dutch startup Tvilight implemented the brilliant idea of light-on-demand with the help of sensors that detect nearby users. If there aren’t any people or cars present, the street lights are dimmed and energy is saved. The street lights of the 21st century may be used for wireless internet access, location-based advertising, traffic control, street parking, measuring air quality and, last but not least, charging electric vehicles as promoted by Berlin-based Ubitricity. The more services you want to integrate, the more service providers you have to bring together to make money with smart lighting.

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Call for startups to pitch at Ecosummit London 2014 on 7-8 October

Our second Ecosummit London takes place on 7-8 October 2014 at the Crystal. As in the past, we want to feature a lot of smart green startups on stage as this is what VCs and corporates really want – meeting innovative startups in a cool location in a time and cost efficient way. During our new Ecosummit Startup Showcase we promote startups from Europe that have raised less than €1M venture capital. We give away at least 10 free 5-minute pitch slots to fundable startups. To apply for a free pitch please create and update your startup profile on Ecosummit Market and email us your investor presentation as soon as possible (see guideline below). We announce the winners on a first come, first serve basis. Check the ECO14 London speakers to find out which startups are part of the showcase. Startups that have raised more than €1M and need more money and publicity can secure their pitch slot by buying a startup pitch ticket for £500,00 + VAT. Please contact us if you are interested and we send you a startup ticket discount code.

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Susana Quintana-Plaza presents the co-investment strategy of EON

Ecosummit TV: Susana Quintana-Plaza presents the co-investment strategy of EON at ECO13 London. Since 2013 the German utility has been very active as a corporate co-investor in the US and Europe having made 9 direct investments including Opower, Sungevity, Bloom Energy, Orcan Energy (ECO14 Award Bronze) and, most recently, Berlin-based heating system online retailer Thermondo. EON also made 1 fund investment into the American VC Westly Group to quickly learn the trade. With 35 million customers and revenues of €122.5B in 2013, EON co-invests with the aim of rolling out the startups’ products to their customer base to help generate new revenues. This means that startups should have a competitive product and revenues to get EON excited about a participation. The next opportunity to pitch to Susana and her team is ECO14 London on 7-8 October.

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Christian Deilmann pitches Tado that recently raised €10M for global expansion

Ecosummit TV: Christian Deilmann pitches Tado at ECO13 London. Since then the Munich-based smart heating startup launched in the UK, developed and kickstarted a smart cooling app – Christian’s original idea – and raised €10M from Target Partners, Shortcut Ventures and other unnamed investors to accelerate their growth and global expansion. Tado is Nest‘s best positioned competitor in Europe. In the last 3 years the team of 40 employees developed a scalable Internet of Things platform that supports 5.000 different types of heating systems and a growing number of air conditioning systems. In the future, Tado will connect other appliances in the smart home, too. In our opinion, a smart home rather needs only one open gateway that communicates with all online devices in the household. The question is who enters and controls the smart home first. It may well be Tado rather than Nest.

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