As companies and governments increasingly adopt carbon-free energy solutions, Barcelona-based cleantech startup FlexiDAO has raised over €6.1 million for its round-the-clock electricity and carbon tracking capabilities.
Achieving net-zero and moving to cleaner, carbon-free energy sources is of top priority to different governments, organisations and businesses around the world.l From the EU aiming to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 to Google’s ambitions to be carbon-free – there are many different strategies in place to move towards energy sources that are healthier and more sustainable.
With a goal to provide the software that will make these aims achievable, Barcelona-based FlexiDAO has secured more than €6.1 million in fresh funding. The round was led by SET Ventures, with investment from Google and the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund. Existing investor EIT InnoEnergy also participated.
Founded in 2017, FlexiDAO offers software tools for companies and organisations to monitor the renewable energy they buy and the associated carbon emissions hour-by-hour and 24/7. It, therefore, empowers clients to operate on round-the-clock carbon-free energy, by certifying and tracing their electricity and its true carbon content, every hour of every day.
Simone Accornero, CEO and co-founder of FlexiDAO said: “If we don’t act now by pushing breakthrough technologies that decarbonise every electron, every hour of every day, we will never meet decarbonisation targets.”
With the realisation that climate action is an imperative we all need to take responsibility for – and need to take action on now – more than a third of the world’s largest publicly traded companies now have net-zero targets. Couple this with increasing pressure on companies for transparent reporting of their emissions to drive decarbonisation and there becomes a market need for tools that help companies get to carbon neutrality. And this need has been growing.
As Simone Accornero, CEO and co-founder of FlexiDAO said: “If we don’t act now by pushing breakthrough technologies that decarbonise every electron, every hour of every day, we will never meet decarbonisation targets.”
However, by and large, companies lack the tools to accurately calculate and reduce the carbon footprint of their electricity. Indeed, few companies know if the “green” electricity they already buy is really carbon-free, every hour and in every location.
The reality is, that signing up for 100% renewable energy contracts does not guarantee carbon-free energy. Existing schemes used to certify and report the carbon footprint of electricity usage match a company’s energy demand with renewable energy on a global and annual basis. This doesn’t account for the real world’s geographical constraints and the hourly, or daily, fluctuations where electricity may come from fossil fuels, such as when there is not enough wind or solar power available. This means a company procuring “100% renewable” energy may receive fossil fuel power depending on its location and the time of day, month or year.
It’s an issue that puts plans to reach carbon neutrality in jeopardy. And these plans are crucial in the fight against climate change and the escalating climate crisis.
Maud Texier, Global Head of Clean Energy Development at Google explained: “As Google and others move towards 24/7 carbon-free energy, we need new capabilities that enable us to track with credibility how the carbon-free electricity produced matches what is consumed.”
It’s echoed by Brandon Middaugh, Director of the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund, who said: Last year, Microsoft announced its 100/100/0 vision and commitment to have 100% of its electricity consumption, 100% of the time, matched by zero-carbon sources by 2030. We know that to achieve this goal, we will need innovative solutions like FlexiDAO that will help reliably track and verify carbon-free energy consumption”.
FlexiDAO´s software platform uses blockchain technology to certify and trace electricity from production to consumption, to enable credible and verifiable claims on its carbon footprint, every hour of the day. This enables customers to understand the origin and carbon footprint of the energy they consume across their operations and take action to procure cleaner electricity and drive decarbonisation of their operations, making 24/7 carbon-free energy a reality.
By measuring the hourly match between energy consumption and the green energy purchased, FlexiDAO customers can verify progress towards their net-zero ambitions. Electricity suppliers can increase customer engagement by providing more transparent information on the carbon footprint of their power – so it’s a real win-win.
Extended across an economy, this transparency and accountability will support the growth of 24/7 carbon-free electricity grids, benefiting everyone.
René Savelsberg of SET Ventures commented: “As an early investor in FlexiDAO we could see the potential of the growing market demand for their solution. We are very glad that this has been confirmed by Google and Microsoft not only being key customers but now also investors, leading the path for the successful acceleration of FlexiDAO.24/7 carbon-free energy is a huge area of growth. FlexiDAO’s platform addresses a real business need with the potential to scale to meet the global challenge. We believe this could set the scene for a 24/7 carbon-free energy marketplace this decade and accelerate decarbonisation of the electricity grid.”
The Barcelonian startup will use the new investment to expand its services, making carbon neutrality a reality across the world. Already present in 13 counties, the company plans to continue growth in its core US and European markets. It will also put the funding towards developing new technology to ensure it stays in line with any upcoming changes regarding emissions reporting regulations.
Simone Accornero indeed: “This investment is a significant milestone for FlexiDAO, but also for the wider 24/7 carbon-free energy market. With our new partners, we can expand our global footprint and our product-portfolio, offering solutions to support companies through their journey to 100% carbon-free energy. This includes the trading and procurement of granular hourly certificates for clean energy, helping customers accelerate their transition to net zero.”