edp news

EDP launches 2nd edition of Free Electrons global startup acceleration program

Tuesday 12, December 2017

Portugal based BeOn won the 2017 program

EDP, together with 7 other international utilities, launched today the second edition of Free Electrons, a global startup acceleration program. The goal is reach startups developing solutions in mobility, clean and smart energy and digitalization.

The startups for the Free Electrons program will participate in 3 acceleration modules of roughly a week, that will take place between April and October of 2018. The modules will be held in the San Francisco Bay Area and in two other locations around the World, in Europe and the Far East.

Applications have opened today, December 12th, and will last until early February. The selection of the best startups for the program will take until mid-March, when an announcement of the participants will be made.

Startups interested in participating should present their applications to the Free Electrons program at www.freetheelectron.com .

Free Electrons first edition took place between May and September of 2017 and passed by San Francisco, Lisbon, Dublin and Singapore. BeOn, a Portuguese based company that sells integrated plug and play solar kits, including panel and a self- developed microinverter, was the big winner, having signed several agreements with Member utilities and receiving an award of 175.000 US dollars.

Several other startups from several parts of the globe participated in Free Electrons 2017 editions: Aperio and Driivz (Israel), Climote (Ireland), Depsys (Switzerland), Greencom (Germany), DataGlen (India), Tempus (UK) and HST, Ohm Connect, Simple Energy and EthosGen (USA).

A win-win approach for startups and utilities

The utilities backing Free Electrons are leading innovation in the energy sector. They’ve assumed the commitment to work together with startups in building the future of the sector with clean, smart and widely accessible energy.

The 8 utility members have an aggregated customer base of 73 millions and develop activities in over 40 countries all over the planet. The Free Electrons program connects startups with each of the 8 utilities experts and key decision makers generating a very significant deal flow of pilot projects, partnerships, commercial contracts and investment.

The 8 Free Electrons utility members are: EDP (Portugal), Ausnet Services (Australia), DEWA (Dubai), ESB (Ireland), Innogy (Germany), Origin (Australia), SP (Singapore) and Tepco (Japan).

At the end of the Free Electrons 2017 third module, in Singapore, late September, the global financial value of the contracts signed between the 12 startups and the 8 utilities was about 2 million dollars, with a pipeline of opportunities being developed reaching over 12 million dollars.

The Free Electrons Program is the best opportunity for startups in the energy space to grow and develop their businesses.