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Shell Ventures backs Sonnen’s solar energy sharing model

ImpactAlpha, May 25 – Solar power models available to residential customers today include off-grid panels, micro-grid communities that use a shared power source and network, and central-grid connected solar users who channel excess power back to utilities.

Germany’s Sonnen, which makes solar energy storage batteries, has developed a system to allow solar-powered residences to share self-generated power among themselves. It connects users of its solar batteries to each other through its sonnenCommunity product.

  • Oil company backing… Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell’s venture arm led Sonnen’s €60 million ($71 million) funding round.
  • Investment to date… Sonnen has raised about $180 million and its prior investors include GE Ventures, eCapital, MVP, SET Ventures and Inven Capital.
  • Customer base… Sonnen has about 120,000 customers, including 17,000 sonnenCommunity customers, and plans to expand in the U.S. and Australia.

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