Equinor Ventures – led consortium invests €30 million in EIT InnoEnergy supported electricity storage company Elestor
Dutch large-scale electricity storage company Elestor has secured a €30 million investment from a consortium led by the corporate venture capital arm of the Norwegian energy giant Equinor.
The consortium also includes the venture capital arm of the world’s leading independent tank storage company Royal Vopak, Dutch impact investor Invest-NL (as co-lead investor) and Somerset Capital Partners, as well as existing shareholders EIT InnoEnergy and Enfuro Ventures.
“The investment proves that we have earned the trust and support of this diverse group of highly respected investors. During the investment process, coordinated by Deloitte Corporate Finance as Elestor’s exclusive advisor, the investors have carried out a comprehensive technical and operational due diligence that has validated both our technology and our ability to deliver,” said Guido Dalessi, CEO, Elestor.
Elestor, which has been ranked as one of the 10 most innovative companies in the Netherlands*, is now ready to implement an ultra-rapid growth strategy that will accelerate the commercialisation of its proven hydrogen bromine flow battery technology, up to a GW scale production facility, which is a truly unprecedented development.
“We are ready to deliver exactly the kind of renewable electricity storage solutions the world is crying out for right now: Long Duration Energy Storage, or LDES. Expansion of Elestor’s production capacity and supply chain management is under control of Hylke van Bennekom (COO, Elestor), who joined the company’s management team in April 2021 through an MBI.” said Dalessi.
Founded in 2014 by Wiebrand Kout (CTO, Elestor), Elestor has developed flow batteries using hydrogen and bromine as active materials, both available at virtually unlimited quantities. In addition, as the battery generates hydrogen during the charging process, the concept introduces several new and unique possibilities for integration with hydrogen infrastructures and electrolysers. As such, the Elestor technology bridges the two worlds of energy storage: with batteries and in the form of hydrogen.
The technology makes it possible to store renewable energy produced by wind farms or by solar power plants in a way that is both cost-effective and efficient, as well as robust and scalable.
“Technologies providing long-term energy storage at scale will play an important role in satisfying the growing need to stabilise power markets. We look forward to working together with Elestor,” said Gareth Burns, head of Equinor Ventures.
Investing in companies and projects that contribute to the transition towards a carbon-neutral and circular economy is the cornerstone of Invest-NL’s strategy. Both hydrogen and energy storage facilities such as batteries are an integrated part of its execution.
“As the National Promotional Institution of the Netherlands, Invest-NL is enthusiastic to be part of this great consortium of renowned investors. We favour groundbreaking technologies such as Elestor’s hydrogen bromine flow batteries because they hold tremendous potential for scaling up quickly and thus to speed up the Dutch transition towards a carbon-neutral and circular economy,” said Leo Holwerda, Chief Investment Officer of Invest-NL.
The energy transition will not merely help combat climate change and air pollution. In addition, Elestor and other climate tech companies will create new jobs, deliver economic growth and generate financial returns for investors.
“Elestor’s ability to deliver low-cost, large-scale energy storage sits at the heart of the energy transition that we aim to support across our investment portfolio, which is ranging from battery technology to sustainable and off-grid logistics real estate developments for the future,” said Joes Daemen, Founder and Managing Partner, Somerset Capital Partners.
Investors are also encouraged by the cooperation with Royal Vopak, an expert in storage and handling of energy and chemicals.
“Royal Vopak has worked with Elestor for some time. Our joint ambition is to scale up the electricity storage capacity of flow batteries and then further develop it to industrial scale. Long Duration Energy Storage is part of Vopak’s strategy to accelerate towards the storage and handling of new energies,” said Leo Brand, Director Vopak Ventures.
Elestor keeps contributing to the success of its early investor, clean energy group Koolen Industries, which delivers integrated solutions that incorporate every step from electricity generation to end user solutions.
“Cost effective storage of clean energy is of paramount importance to the energy transition. I believe the technology Elestor developed is an elegant solution to the challenge of large-scale electricity storage. As an investor, I’m always thrilled when a group company is able to make the jump to a next growth phase. Congratulations to Guido and the Elestor team for securing this investment round and let’s move on to our common goal: Clean Energy for Everyone,” said Kees Koolen, Founder and CEO, Koolen Industries.
*The Amsterdam Centre for Business Innovation at the University of Amsterdam ranks Elestor as one of the 10 most innovative companies in The Netherlands. https://www.elestor.nl/de-voorselectie-voor-de-nederlandse-innovatie-prijs-2021-is-bekend/