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Philipp Rode of LSE talks about smart green cities

Ecosummit TV: According to Philipp Rode, Executive Director at LSE Cities, cities are leading the next economy as we already surpassed 50% urbanisation. Having surveyed 90 cities, Philipp identifies the key sectors driving cities’ economic growth as being green transport, renewable energy, green building retrofits, new green buildings, energy distribution and green goods and services. Cities can learn from each other because they are very different. As for energy, the city of Munich owns 100% of the local utility Stadtwerke München and, as a result, is able to set the goal of 100% renewables in 2025 and manage the transition of local energy generation and distribution following a long-term strategy. It also turns out that cities are willing to collaborate and try out new ideas to facilitate the smart green transition. That sounds like an open invitation for startups to participate in the urban transformation.

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Laurits Bach Sorensen pitches Microshade

Ecosummit TV: Laurits Bach Sorensen pitches Microshade at ECO13 London. Microshade’s solar shading technology is integrated into glass facades and roof structures and significantly reduces the energy used for cooling and ventilation. Thus it reduces the OPEX of the building and enables an attractive ROI. The Danish startup was founded in 2003, has got 10 employees, is backed by Chrysalix SET and recently did a strategy pivot by focusing on the retrofit market as well as large commercial buildings with a lot of glazing surfaces. Now Laurits wants to raise $2.5M to accelerate growth and prove the superior economics of their solar shading solution on a large scale.

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Detlef Pohl pitches Siemens Venture Capital

Ecosummit TV: Detlef Pohl pitches Siemens Venture Capital at ECO13 London. The cities of the future have to be sustainable, competitive and livable to attract the best companies and citizens. Therefore, cities need intelligent infrastructure that integrates buildings, mobility, water supply, waste management and security while minimising the carbon footprint. Siemens not only provides a myriad of new technologies for smart green cities but also venture capital and project financing for the development and deployment of such technologies. The ability to offer customised financing solutions drives the sales of smart green innovation. It’s useful to be a corporate and have a big balance sheet. As for venture capital, Siemens is an investor in the EV charging network Chargepoint that recently raised $22.6M and operates over 17.000 charging stations.

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Trued Holmquist pitches ATC Industrial Group from Sweden

Ecosummit TV: Trued Holmquist pitches ATC Industrial Group from Sweden at ECO13 London. ATC develops a self-learning home energy management system called Scypho. Targeting single family houses the system uses neural network technology to provide comfort on demand to the end users. Scypho controls the heating and cooling system of the building using a gateway, sensors and smartphones as user interface and enables energy cost savings of up to 30%. Up to now ATC has been active in Sweden and wants to raise €2.5M to grow faster and enter new international markets. In the future, Scypho will be extended to serve as a smart home platform that integrates more services such as lighting control or intelligent demand response. As the smart home marketplace is quite crowded already, it will be interesting to watch which startups outrun the competition.

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Franz Salzmann pitches Lock8 – the Airbnb for bicycles

Ecosummit TV: Franz Salzmann pitches Lock8 at ECO13 London. Their bikes got stolen frequently at Oxford University. To solve this problem, Franz Salzmann and his co-founder Daniel Zajarias-Fainsod developed Lock8, a sensor smart, GPS tracked and online bicycle lock. The Lock8 app locates available bicycles and functions as the wireless key for the smart lock – all you need to build a global Airbnb for bicycles. Berlin-based Christophe Maire (Atlantic Internet) invested early, followed by a couple of million Euro from Horizons Ventures in Hong Kong and Otto Capital. Lock8 is a cool product that works well on Kickstarter to aggregate pre-orders and safe cycling enthusiasts. All set for a successful market launch.

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Martin Mohr pitches Ecoduna from Austria

Ecosummit TV: Martin Mohr pitches Ecoduna at ECO13 London. Founded in 2009, the Austrian startup develops algae production systems and is one of the global technology leaders. Ecoduna already makes money in the food supplement market with high-value Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids. Algae production will be price competitive in the food market in 2 years, the plastics market in 4-5 years and the energy market in 8-12 years. Ecoduna’s vertical photobioreactors are supposed to be better than the competition as they work in a continuous, software-controlled process with neither too much nor too little light.

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Christina di Sano pitches Smart Hydro Power

Ecosummit TV: Christina di Sano pitches Smart Hydro Power at ECO13 London. Founded in 2010, Smart Hydro Power develops a kinetic hydro power turbine that uses the movement of rivers to produce clean energy. The hydro power plants are targeted at offgrid communities that up to now had to rely on costly and dirty diesel generators. Their first product is a 5 KW turbine with built-in debris protection that costs €12.5K. Smart Hydro Power is backed by Ecapital and High-tech Gründerfonds and won the Ecosummit Award 2012 Gold medal. The German startup is currently fundraising and interested in talking to a new lead investor.

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Previewing Cleantech Forum 2014 in Stockholm with Richard Youngman

Fundraising is super difficult for startups as well as VC funds and it takes a long time during which existing and new relationships have to be nurtured. Fund investors (LPs) want to see more exits and return of capital rather than return on capital. To learn about the latest tricks of the trade and to network with the active VCs and startups it is not only a good idea to join ECO14 Berlin on 3-4 June but also to head to Stockholm to the 10th Cleantech Forum Europe 2014 (CFE14) on 19-21 May. As in the past, we support the Cleantech Group by participating and interviewing Richard Youngman (MD Europe & Asia) to give you extra motivation to join us – in case you still need it. The photos are taken at CFE13 in Bilbao.

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Jonathan Tyler presents Climate-KIC and its startup accelerator

Ecosummit TV: Jonathan Tyler presents Climate-KIC and its startup accelerator at ECO13 London. The public-private partnership is funded by the European Commission via the EIT (European Institute of Innovation and Technology) with a budget of €63M in 2014. Climate-KIC has got 6 national centres embedded in leading universities in UK, Denmark, Netherlands, France, Germany and Switzerland and fosters education, innovation and entrepreneurship with a particular focus on early stage cleantech startups. Among the many startups funded by Climate-KIC are Tado (Germany), Waste2chemical (Netherlands) and Aqdot (UK). Climate-KIC Germany partners again with Ecosummit Berlin 2014 and sends their best fundable startups to our smart green innovation conference.

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Alexander Bigge Lidgren presents Swedish Energy Agency and its cleantech portfolio

Ecosummit TV: At ECO13 London, Bigge presents the Swedish Energy Agency that turns out to be the most active funder of cleantech companies in the Nordics with over €120M invested in 2013 and 2012 respectively. As of October 2013, the Swedish Energy Agency had funded 53 energy-related companies with soft loans that either go to projects or directly to the companies. Only if the startup is a success and starts invoicing, the agency gets their money back. Ecofective, ATC Industrial Group and Ecospark are the 3 cases that joined ECO13 London. Clean Motion and their electric 3-wheeler Zbee and Sol Voltaics are also backed by the agency. If you are interested in innovation and dealflow from the Nordics, meet Bigge again at ECO14 Berlin.

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Enernoc buys Entelios – did this cleantech exit happen too fast?

On 14 February 2014, Enernoc buys Entelios, Germany’s demand response pioneer. The Munich-based startup was founded in July 2010 by serial entrepreneurs Oliver Stahl, Tom Schulz and Stephan Lindner. With a holding period of 3 years since the first VC investment this is definitely a fast cleantech exit. But this exit may have happened too fast given that demand response is the killer app of the smart grid, a massive global market opportunity and a capital efficient option to accelerate the Energiewende (energy transition). In the end, smart demand wins over stupid supply even though it is hard to convince all market participants. And before we forget: congratulations to the Entelios team.

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Bloomberg’s Michael Wilshire analyses clean energy investment activity and trends

Ecosummit TV: Michael Wilshire, Director of Analysis at Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), talks about clean energy investment activity and trends at ECO13 London. BNEF provides independent market intelligence to investors and researches into the massive clean energy industry with a focus on policy, technology, economics, finance and supply chains. Clean energy attracted $281B of new investments in 2012 of which a small but important portion is VC and PE driving innovation.

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