Article written by mHUB team
At the Demo Day event on December 7 & 8, mHUB welcomed investors, industry partners, and members of the hardtech innovation ecosystem to watch eight Climate and EnergyTech startupspitch their solutions at the end of their 6-month mHUB Accelerator journey.
mHUB convenes a deep network of industry, mentors, and hardtech venture capital through its accelerator program, which breaks down the barriers early-stage tech companies face while prototyping and scaling their businesses.
Watch the Climate and EnergyTech Demo Day Event Recap Here:
Led by Executive Director Thierry Van Landegem, the Climate and EnergyTech program kicked off with a focus on customer discovery to identify target customers and markets. Participants then moved into rapid prototyping, with some fleshing out initial designs and others developing iterative generations of an existing solution.
An important part of the accelerator programming focuses on business and financial acumen, and how to generate revenue. Each startup was also matched with a mentor whose skillset and expertise helped define their business and financial models, unit economics, and go-to-market strategy.
At the program midpoint, the cohort teams pitched their business and product-market fit to a select group of program stakeholders and corporate partners, including representatives of program partners Nicor Gas of Southern Company and Invenergy, for a chance to gain additional investments and opportunities.
All of this resulted in eight Demo Day pitches showcasing each startups’ passion to build a better future for the planet with their innovative technologies improving the efficiency of renewable energy, producing green hydrogen, developing efficient energy storage, capturing carbon, and more.
Here’s a look at the 2022 Climate and EnergyTech Cohort and their progress made by the end of the program:
blip energy is defining a new category of smart home batteries by leveraging second-life batteries to create an affordable, accessible, and portable power station that works in any home. Earlier this month blip received investments from corporate partners at $100K from Invenergy and $50K from Nicor Energy Ventures. blip will also be piloting with Reactivate, a community solar project and joint venture of Invenergy and Lafayette Square.
Hago Energetics is generating green hydrogen from waste materials such as agricultural waste, landfills, and wastewater plants to decarbonize hydrogen production. Hago received a $50K investment from Nicor Energy Ventures. Hago also recently received a grant of $300K from the CalTestBedprogram from the California Energy Commission to test their technology at university research centers. Hago Energetics is now building its first pilot out of the biggest dairy farm in California. With the help of mHUB, Hago is designing its next version to produce 4 kg of H2 per hour, an important step on the journey towards 100 kg/hr commercial units.
Icarus RT is developing a hybrid cogeneration plus storage system that cools PV panels to improve performance and store heat to provide hot water. All in all, Icarus’ system doubles the energy per square foot, produces hot water at 130F, and reduces carbon emissions. Icarus secured $1.8M of paid contracts for which they are currently building the first pilot at Palomar College in California. In spring of 2023, Icarus will be installing a 280kW deployment at the Chula Vista Police headquarters in California.
infiniRel is developing preventive diagnostics to improve reliability of power electronics for renewable energy systems (the inverter) in order to increase the uptime of the energy system, lower the maintenance cost, and extend the life of the inverters. infiniREL has a binding pilot test agreement and three customer Letters of Intent under its belt and recently welcomed an investment of $250K. mHUB is helping to finalize a ruggedized version of its key EKG product.
Kazadi Enterprises is reducing the cost and carbon footprint of commercial refrigeration by leveraging the vast energy resources in environmental heat. CEO and Founder Sanza Kazadi was the recipient of the 2022 Nicor Multicultural Innovator Award for $25K. In addition, Kazadi Enterprises also earned a $25K investment from program partner Invenergy. Kazadi Enterprises is currently working on upgrading a refrigerator model of an OEM partner in the medical transport space using Kazadi’s patented technology.
nexTC is developing thin film coatings for solar cells to improve their efficiency as well as lower costs of the coating production process. Recently nexTC sold its first product to a major glass producer and was given an engineering service contract to help improve a glass producer’s current product line.
OXTO Energy is designing and manufacturing the next generation of safe, high-power, and low-cost flywheel batteries. They were recently awarded with a paid contract by a Japanese data center operator for a pilot of three systems to stabilize their energy provision. This follows a currently deployed pilot in a smart city environment in the south of France and a pilot in Canada focusing on a renewables and microgrid integration project.
Sandbox Carbon is producing high quality carbon offsets by direct air capture of carbon dioxide using minimal energy consumption. mHUB is helping build its first small scale prototype reactor. Sandbox Carbon secured investment from program partner Invenergy for $25K.