Ioanna is a writer at TNW. She covers the full spectrum of the European tech ecosystem, with a particular interest in startups, sustainabili Ioanna is a writer at TNW. She covers the full spectrum of the European tech ecosystem, with a particular interest in startups, sustainability, green tech, AI, and EU policy. With a background in the humanities, she has a soft spot for social impact-enabling technologies.
Over the past year, the skyrocketing fuel prices across Europe have increased consumer interest in alternative sources of energy, such as solar power. And as demand has been on the rise, 2022 was a good funding year for startups focusing on providing photovoltaic (PV) technology to residential customers.
Specifically, European startups in the sector have raised over €488 million — and that’s excluding the €855-million debt funding round attracted by Berlin-based unicorn Enpal.
Notably, 86.4% of the amount has been injected in German-based startups, including 1Komma5°, Zolar, Sunhero, Enpal, Einhundert, and Sunvigo.
1Komma5° has received the highest funding throughout the year at €200 million. Founded in 2021, the company has secured high-tier investors such as Porsche and is introducing an interesting business strategy: aggregating individual companies that offer solar services and bundling them together.
Beyond Germany, residential solar tech companies that have seen an increase in capital are also active in Spain (Samara), Sweden (Sunroof), Norway (Otovo), Estonia (Solarstone), and the UK (Naked Energy, Solivus).
Among them, Spain-based Samara offers another interesting case. Founded in the summer of 2022, the startup has managed to raise €6.4 million within six months.
The company uses software to develop a comprehensive, customer-centered solution, ranging from the installation of solar panels to EV chargers. The technology enables users to preview solar panel installation through a 3D model, estimate energy savings, and calculate their positive environmental impact through a decrease in CO2 emissions.
What all the companies have in common is the aim to enable the transition to solar energy by focusing on affordability and convenience: from easy installation practices and maintenance services to customizable options and energy monitoring tools.
Overall, 2022 has enabled startups in the space to attract even more capital, demonstrating their potential to provide better services to consumers, and in turn, promote further the switch to solar power.
And as Europe is pushing for the adoption of sustainable forms of energy, we can expect that solar tech startups will see higher investment in the coming year.
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