In what ways has the New Energy Challenge (NEC) elevated your business?
As winners of the NEC 2019, we were awarded vital funding and support from Shell GameChanger which provided us with a great amount of exposure that has really elevated our business. Participating in the NEC also assisted us in gaining access to new customers, generating interest and funding and in establishing credibility within the transportation and mobility sectors. NanoSUN is now on a continuous journey of growth. Our team has tripled in size since March 2020 and our goal is to increase that by four times by the end of this year.
What does the future hold for you, now and beyond?
Our primary goal is to provide faster filling of hydrogen-powered vehicles with mobile refueling stations. We are now in the process of finding a series-A fundraiser to scale up manufacturing of our Pioneer Hydrogen Refuelling Station (HRS) and are looking at the next generation of products with higher pressure storage, all in pursuit of delivering optimal solutions for delivering hydrogen. The mobile Pioneer HRS offers local distribution as a fundamental factor in building an effective hydrogen fuel infrastructure and facilitating hydrogen mobility. We are already starting to see the benefits of the Pioneer (Hydrogen Refuelling Station) solution in accelerating the energy transition within the transport sector, particularly heavy-duty vehicles, having established future collaborations with significant players within the hydrogen industry. In fact, 50 percent of our orders for next year are already full!
How did you experience the NEC?
It was fantastic to win the NEC in 2019! The challenge gave us the opportunity to meet investors and really build our story. What stood out to us was the pitch training, which really assisted us in understanding our value proposition to bridge the gap between hydrogen production and the end users of hydrogen-powered vehicle fleets. This in turn made us truly look at our product offering, which steered us into aligning our focus on our Pioneer HRS. The intense preparation period ultimately helped us to validate our ideas and understand how to share our vision in the best way possible. This allowed us, among other things, to be more effective when meeting with investors and other start-ups..
What would your advice for this year’s/future participants be?
Take the preparation period seriously as there is a lot to plan for. Also, really think about why you want to participate. Winning the money sure is nice, but that does not directly help develop your business. What you need is connections, engagement and insights from other people, which participating in the NEC provides.