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The startup behind the world’s first solar-compatible EV charger raises $36 million to go worldwide

ev charging
Image Credit: CHUTTERSNAP // Unsplash
  • In 2016, the British startup, myenergi, created the zappi, the world’s first solar-compatible EV charger.

  • According to the Department of Energy, charging an EV with solar power benefits the electricity grid, provides backup power for homes during extreme weather events, saves money, and helps improve environmental health by maximizing clean energy opportunities.

  • Since making EV charging solar, myenergi has launched three other products that aim to make home electrification easier for consumers including the eddi power diverter, the harvi, a wireless energy monitoring system, and the libbi smart home battery.

  • Now, after launching headquarters and offices all over Europe and in Australia, the company raised £30 million ($36.43 million) and is eyeing the global market.

In 2016, the British startup, myenergi, was born out of a simple question from its founders, Lee Sutton and Jordan Brompton: why wasn’t a device on the market that allowed Lee to charge his electric vehicle with the solar panels on his roof? And thus, the zappi, the world’s first solar-compatible EV charger, was born.

Since then, the industry has shed more light on the idea, with Tesla launching Charge On Solar earlier this year. But the zappi, as the startup reports, has yet to eclipse and remains the market leader in this corner of the electrification industry.

But why was a solar-compatible EV charger needed anyway?

According to the Department of Energy, it not only saves money but helps to further save the planet by benefiting the electricity grid – which in many cases in the United States is strained due to intensified weather events — and provides backup power for homes in the event of intense weather, on top of improving environmental health by further lowering personal carbon impacts and contributing to a greener local electricity mix.

Plus, in its current iteration, the zappi can not only charge an EV using power from the sun, but also the wind, or the grid.

Following in the zappi’s footsteps, the startup proceeded to launch several other products that aim to make the transition to a greener home easier, including the eddi, a tool that diverts excess renewable energy to domestic heating systems, the harvi, a wireless energy monitoring system, and finally, the libbi, a smart home battery, that debuted at the end of last year.

Now, with its fleet of clean-energy-focused home products behind it, myenergi has nabbed an investment of £30 million ($36.43 million) from the firm Energy Impact Partners (EIP) following its securing £30m debt finance from HSBC earlier this year.

The investment is not only going to be used to support further growth, but to help the company break out of Lincolnshire, Britain, and into the international market.

Already in the last few years, the company has opened headquarters in Ireland, targeting its surge in EV sales, in the Netherlands, due to the European appetite for eco-smart tech, the startup says, its flagship in the UK, and one in Australia, which has the highest levels of solar irradiation in the world and is one of the fastest-growing major renewable energy producers. Earlier this year, the company also further expanded across Europe, turning its attention to Germany and launching two offices.

On top of taking their products worldwide, Lee said in a statement that the investment will help the startup’s planned growth in grid services, “such as demand side response, allowing us to better support our customers in undertaking their own home energy transition.”

“As we transition to a net zero future, it’s vital for consumers to be given easy and convenient ways to make the shift away from fossil fuels towards clean, green, renewable energy,” Jordan added in a statement.

“We are really excited by the investment from EIP, which will help to bring our eco-smart products into more households, enabling our customers to monitor, manage and maximize their home energy, as well as reducing their emissions, streamlining their energy bills and ultimately empowering them to become more energy independent.”

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