Cactos, a Finnish startup wanting to finish unsustainable energy practices has just raised €2.5 million of new capital. The greentech startup turns second-life EV batteries into smart energy storage units, creating a circular, more efficient energy system for Europe.
Winter is coming, energy bills are rising and the green transition is more urgent than ever before. Compounded by the increasingly-concerning energy crisis, supply chain issues, and geopolitical factors, the energy market is a highly volatile space at the moment, and Eruope needs to move towards a greener, more sustainable and more independent solutions before the crisis escalates even further. According to European Commission Vice President Maroš Šefčovič: “Energy Storage has a key role in solving Europe’s energy crisis”.
Startups are at the forefront of bringing about solutions to these challenging times, and they’re continuing to grow – both with ideas and financially. Now, Finnish startup Cactos has secured new funding for its fresh take on energy storage, using second life Electric Vehicle (EV) batteries.
- €2.5 million raises in equity and debt led by Superhero Capital
- Cactos’ founders also participated
- The funding will be used to fuel growth, increase production and expand internationally.
Oskari Jaakkola, CEO and founder of Cactos: “Our first year of operation is coming to a close. In the first semester, we brought to the market one of the world’s most advanced energy storage systems. Following the roll-out, market demand for our product has been exceptionally strong, and the funding we raised will help us to fully respond to this demand. We are also happy to welcome Superhero Capital as a shareholder of Cactos. Our cooperation has started well, and we have seen that the Superhero team shares our understanding of the energy markets – a sustainable transition to renewable energy requires smart energy storage solutions that are easily accessible.”
Smart energy storage
Founded just last year, Cactos is aiming to meet the growing demand for innovative solutions to Europe’s unfolding energy crisis. The Finnish startup provides a full-service fleet of distributed energy storage systems based on smart energy storage units and a cloud computing service.
How does it work?
Cactos’ energy storage units are made from re-used Tesla EV batteries, making them one of the market’s most environmentally friendly energy storage units. They also provide an end-of-life solution for the electrification of transport and encourage a fully circular economy.
The EV battery modules are disassembled, inspected and tested at the Cactos factory in Muhos, Finland, and are converted into 100kWh energy storage units by a team of Cactos experts.
The algorithmic-based cloud computing service, Cactos Spine, controls and optimises the fleet of energy storage units. This enables consistent energy supply through usage peaks or blackouts, as well as an optimisation that maximises the benefit of lower electricity prices. In addition, the energy storage units provide stability to the transmission grid by balancing supply and demand. When there is a shortage of electricity, the units automatically discharge energy into the grid, and if there is excess production, the units absorb energy.
Meeting new demands
Offering its service to a range of clients, the company also aims to support businesses with the green transition by adapting to their changing needs and demands.
For example, the increased number of electric vehicles has created new challenges for both the prospective charging locations and electricity distribution networks. Fast charging causes significant energy consumption peaks, and the charging stations may need to limit charging power due to limited connection size.
Cactos aims to address this by shaving the peaks and enabling temporary loads larger than the connection size would otherwise allow.
Oskari Jaakkola: “On the ground, companies are concerned about electricity supply and market volatility. The coming winter will clearly be a very difficult one, but the longer-term outlook with energy transition and temporal imbalance in supply and demand means there is a huge need for demand response and different ways to store energy. To service the market at large, our target was to create an energy storage solution that is carefree for the user and easily accessible. I believe we have succeeded in doing that – the Cactos One requires no upfront investment and operates independently.”
Now, not even a year since its launch, the startup already has operational units across Finland that deliver savings and benefits to clients. With its current production operating at maximum capacity, the company will more than double its factory size in early 2023, allowing for nearly a 10-fold increase in unit production.
This is in addition to key partnerships with organsiation in Finland, such as Oomi, one of the largest electricity retailers in Finland, with over 400,000 customers, and Helsinki City Housing Company (Heka Oy) – Finland’s largest residential property owner with over 50,000 apartments.
The funding will fund the company’s growth, including increased energy storage unit production, production facility expansion, and international projects.
Jussi Pyörre, Partner at Superhero Capital: “There is an acute need for smart energy storage systems to support the global transition to a greener world. With the novel business model and technology Cactos has introduced, businesses can profitably contribute to this transition. At Superhero Capital, we are focused on partnering with like-minded businesses and founders to build something extraordinary. We are impressed by their technology, experience and commitment to make this happen.”