Moixa, a smart battery company has announced the completion of an £8.6 million funding round, as global investors led by Honda backed its vision of managing millions of home energy storage systems and electric vehicles (EVs).
The investors also include: ITOCHU Corporation, a Japanese investment house; Fortune 500 company, Contrarian Ventures, a venture capital investor managing smart energy fund powered by Lietuvos Energija, the biggest energy provider in the Baltics; and venture capital investor First Imagine! Ventures.
The £8.6 million investment (including secondary) will support the company’s international growth and expansion of its business managing home batteries, EVs and smart charging, and aggregating battery capacity to provide grid services.
Moixa has pioneered smart charging of batteries and EVs with its patented GridShare technology. It currently manages home energy storage systems in 7000 homes in the UK and Japan, maximising savings for owners, and aggregating a combined 70MWh of capacity, which can be used to support the grid and provide a range of flexibility services.
Simon Daniel, CEO of Moixa, said: “We are helping major brands make the transition to a low-carbon world of EVs, smart charging, and home energy generation and storage, by providing smart software which cuts costs for their customers and helps support the electricity network.
“GridShare uses artificial intelligence to learn about each owner’s energy use and develop a unique charging plan to meet their needs and maximise savings. It knows when it’s most cost effective to buy energy from or sell energy to the grid. It will soon know whether it’s better to charge your car battery or use it to power your home. Our investors recognise that there will be global demand for this technology. Today we are managing thousands of batteries and our goal is to manage millions.”
Moixa was recognised in the 2019 Global Cleantech 100, a prestigious list seen as the global innovation community’s view of which private cleantech companies are best placed to make significant market impact in the next 5-10 years.
A new Moixa investor, Contrarian Ventures, is head quartered in Lithuania. In April, the European Commission announced €385 million funding to support the development of renewable energy generation across the country. The scheme is contributing to the European Union’s environmental objectives.
Rokas Peciulaitis, Managing Partner at Contrarian Ventures said: “Energy storage is one of the most essential elements in the sustainable energy transition. By managing thousands of batteries as a “virtual power plant”, Moixa’s innovative GridShare software is tackling some of the biggest challenges caused by the rapid uptake of renewables. We’re thrilled to back Moixa’s vision to manage the world’s batteries and are excited to see the further expansion of GridShare globally.”
EVs and the Honda partnership
Honda and Moixa announced their partnership at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2019. Honda aims to make 100% of its European automobile sales electrified by 2025 and this partnership supports its plans todevelop an energy management solutions business for Europe to create additional value for EV customers and power system operators.
Moixa has taken part in pioneering trials demonstrating how EV smart charging can help homes at peak times, saving money and reducing emissions. It has also shown how smart charging can support the grid, managing demand and providing a range of flexibility services. It plans to work with Honda on further V2G (vehicle-to-grid) trials in the UK.
Moixa is working with many charging companies, helping them deliver smart charging and develop solutions which allow utility companies to provide better customer offerings. This is particularly important in the UK where the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) will require all government-funded chargers to be smart from 1 July 2019.
Home batteries and the ITOCHU partnership
Moixa’s partnership with ITOCHU saw it expand rapidly into Japan last year and integrate GridShare into the company’s Smart Star batteries. ITOCHU is the second biggest player in Japan’s home energy storage market with a 17% share and its battery sales are running at over 1,000 a month.
Moixa is now managing ITOCHU batteries in 6,000 Japanese homes, with a combined capacity of 60MWh. Moixa and ITOCHU are also exploring the potential of creating a virtual power plant (VPP) by using the capacity from the fleet of batteries to provide grid balancing.
In November 2019, 560,000 Japanese homes will start to leave the country’s 10-year solar subsidy scheme. At the same time, the UK government has closed its feed-in-tariff (FiT) scheme and is assessing the possibility of a Smart Export Guarantee, for suppliers to pay small-scale low-carbon generators for their power.
Moixa is preparing for this by reviewing how its smart software can best utilise artificial intelligence (AI) to optimise third-party home and EV batteries for time of use tariffs, to deliver best outcome for both consumers and the power network.
Simon Daniel said: “Japan and the UK are both energy islands, producing the majority of their electricity locally. Japanese companies recognise our expertise in managing large fleets of batteries and aggregating their spare capacity to help the grid accommodate large swings in solar and wind generation and growth in EV charging. We plan to expand into other countries, helping them manage the transition to a low-carbon and cost-effective energy system.”
Moixa developed GridShare over a series of pioneering projects in the UK. It forms a key part of the £10.8 million Smart Energy Islands project on the Isles of Scilly, led by Hitachi. Moixa is providing software that enables EVs and smart home batteries to help balance supply and demand within a comprehensive smart energy system.