Unique solar-electricity-with-thermal-heat (SPVT) pioneer Naked Energy today received investment and a distribution deal, opening a route into America’s newly energised green power sector.
The unexpected passage last month by Congress of President Biden’s far-reaching environmental expansion and clean power initiatives switches on a green light for $430 billion to be invested in US low-carbon energy.
Among UK firms hoping to clothe themselves in Stateside success, self-proclaimed world leader Naked Energy offers patented technology which combines solar electricity generation on rooftops with solar heat collection.
Creating what it claims as unrivalled energy density from solar generation, Naked Energy today secured US distribution for its Virtu range of patented heat-decarbonising products.
Naked has stitched up a deal with partner ELM Companies, a company now branched out into high-tech grid services, including microgrid operation and energy storage, thirty years after its own launch in Montana.
Today’s deal sees ELM committing to setting up a specialist solar division selling Naked’s energy products through distributors covering 16 states. A new factory in Austin, Texas will also make the British firm’s kit under licence.
Crawley-based Naked Energy was founded in 2009 by advertising creative director and entrepreneur Christophe Williams.
Heating the world’s buildings, people and industrial processes is estimated to account for 51% of all carbon emissions, according to Williams.
Decarbonising heat for offices. factories and homes, while simultaneously making low-carbon power from the same roof space, together yield a carbon saving 3.5 times compared with conventional solar electricity, Naked claims. Clients with small roofs, previously judged unviable for solar, can now benefit from decarbonised heat.
Combined solar-heat-with-PV has hitherto been “a niche of a niche” in roof-based clean energy. Roof-owners were previously deterred by the disproportionate weight & complexity of panels yoking hot water and low-carbon electricity.
Accompanying today’s commitment from ELM to inject unspecified amounts of cash into its British partner, is the launch of Naked’s Series-B round of investment-raising. It targets £10 million more of new backing. Barclays last month took an undisclosed equity stake.
Williams, Naked Energy’s CEO, said: “The United States is a key market for us and we’re incredibly proud to be working with such an exceptionally professional business as ELM.
“With their help we’re looking forward to decarbonizing the United States’ heating systems one building at a time.
“It’s an incredibly exciting time for the business and we are looking for other distributors across the world who share Naked Energy’s green vision”.
“When we were introduced to Naked Energy and the Virtu product range it was a no-brainer for us to work with them,” Lee C Graves, ELM’s chairman and founder commented.
“We’ve seen a significant uptick in interest for renewable energy solutions across the United States. In the face of rising energy prices, we’re pleased to be working with Naked Energy to provide the country with renewable alternatives”.