They take mobile electricity where it has never gone before. Their goal is smart green electrification without local CO2 emissions. Their solution is replacing stinky diesel gensets with silent mobile batteries. Today Instagrid GmbH, Ludwigsburg, Germany, makes a big step forward and celebrates the closing of its €8.5M Series A led by SET Ventures and joined by Segnalita Ventures, part of the Swarovski family office which also owns Tyrolit, Germany’s early stage power house HTGF and the Frankfurt-based family office blueworld.group. Instagrid and SET Ventures met for the first time at Ecosummit Berlin 2019, Ecosummit.net reports.
From Bosch to co-founding a startup
The Stuttgart-based startup was co-founded in January 2018 by Sebastian Berning (PhD in Physics from University of Göttingen) and Andreas Sedlmayr (PhD in Material Science from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology) who worked together for 5 years at Robert Bosch honing their technical development, product management and supply chain skills. At Bosch’s Power Tools unit, they identified the market opportunity for a sophisticated mobile battery for professionals working in the field and decided to leave the safe harbour of the corporate behind and start their own company.
Instagrid claims that they have the world’s most advanced mobile battery. Of course, the future will tell. However, the Co-Founders’ self-confidence stems from a very small, low-cost and highly efficient AC/DC power converter and distributed software developed inhouse over 2 years. Each battery cell is controlled by its own power converter which enables intelligent swarm-like behaviour within a software-defined battery. In reality, Instagrid’s battery is easy to carry around and delivers grid-like power with 230V and 3.6 KW to any equipment, packing enough energy for an entire offgrid workday wherever you go.
Initial target markets include construction and professional gardening. Another use case is mobile EV charging as Instagrid’s batteries can also be stacked to provide more power. Instagrid is a fabless startup without its own factory outsourcing battery production to a European contract manufacturing partner and plans to deliver thousands of units to their channel partners in Summer 2020. The new capital will be used to double the headcount from 20 to 40 in the next 12 months with a special focus on hiring an experienced CFO as soon as possible. In the future, Instagrid also plans to launch their own consumer brand with a battery-as-a-service business model to reach new market segments and realize the full market potential.
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