AddVolt prepares internationalisation with funds from three investors
The Start-up that created technology to produce energy in trucks aims to enter the German and Spanish markets.
AddVolt managed to attract funds from four investors who are now shareholders of the company. Portugal Ventures co-invested in AddVolt in partnership with Abacus alpha and Momentum Holding. They thus join 2bpartner, who has held a share participation since June 2014. Also InnoEnergy is expected to invest in the company in the near future.
Founded in 2014 by Bruno Azevedo, Ricardo Soares, Miguel Sousa and Rodrigues Pires, and incubated at the Science and Technology Park of the University of Porto (UPTEC), the company that created WeTruck - a technology to produce energy in trucks - is thus going to be able to kick-off its internationalisation project. The new investors will help AddVolt get its technology circulating on European streets and in cities where CO2 emissions and noise restrictions have driven the electrification of transport.
In Germany, a market where the biggest components and systems manufacturers for the transport sector are located, AddVolt already has strategic partnerships in place and the support of distributors to launch WeTruck. Entry into the Spanish market is also in the pipeline.
“There are 4.8 million refrigerated lorries and trucks circulating across the globe, a number that is expected to double by 2025. In Europe, there are approximately 1.1 million of these vehicles, where WeTruck can make a difference. AddVolt aims to improve fleet integration with the electrical network and with cities, thus contributing to more sustainable and effective transport, on a path towards 0% fuel consumption in the cooling of goods and foodstuffs”, says Bruno Azevedo, Chief Executive Officer of the company, which was one of the 66 start-ups selected to represent Portugal at Web Summit 2016.
Celso Guedes de Carvalho, CEO of Portugal Ventures, states that “the venture capital investment in AddVolt was driven by its differentiating technology - already validated by a large national customer (Luís Simões) - and by its high potential for international application, at a time when reducing the use of fossil fuels and investment in efficient use of energy resources are essential”. “Moreover, the team is exceptionally skilled, both technically and commercially and this was also a key factor”, he added.
“We are particularly supporting innovation and intelligent technologies which minimise the consumption of natural resources and which are, at the same time, also commercially worthwhile. AddVolt is a perfect match and its founders are brilliant. We are happy to participate in this endeavour which has the potential to improve the world a little bit” says Dr. Bertold Biffar, Investment Manager at Abacus alpha.
Renato Braz, Business Creation Manager for Portugal at InnoEnergy says: “InnoEnergy is looking forward to working with AddVolt and we are very excited about the possibilities that this project opens up. Additionally, this is further evidence of the vitality of the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Portugal right now”.
To João Negrais de Matos, chairman at 2bpartner, AddVolt “fits with 2bartners’ drivers of demand, namely, a team highly capable of focusing on the project and with in-depth knowledge of the subject, as well as a highly innovative technology, which can be internationalised and patented”.
Clara Gonçalves, Executive Director of the Science and Technology Park at the University of Porto (UPTEC), also says that “promoting technology research and innovation at the University of Porto is UPTEC’s goal”. “AddVolt is an excellent example of a project stemming from the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto, with a remarkable team and with highly disruptive technology tested and validated on international markets. Investments like those made by Portugal Ventures reinforce the importance of investing in projects that undeniably add value to the nation’s economy”, she said.
About Portugal Ventures:
Portugal Ventures is a public venture capital firm which focuses its investment policy on innovative scientific and tech-based projects, and on companies that have projects for international expansion. It operates in the Digital, Engineering & Manufacturing, Tourism and Life Sciences sectors and manages funds in the amount of approximately 400 million Euros.
About Abacus alpha GmbH:
Abacus alpha GmbH, based in Frankenthal, Germany, is a private equity company closely associated with a German stock-exchange listed company with a long history. Abacus alpha invests in clean-tech technologies in the sectors of energy, water, wastewater and materials, focusing especially on growth technologies and technology-based services. Abacus alpha holds minority-shares as well as majority-shares and is a long-term investor pursuing a buy-and-hold / buy-and-build strategy.
About Momentum Holding GmbH:
Momentum Holding GmbH is the investment vehicle of a German private investor.
InnoEnergy is the Innovation engine for sustainable energy across Europe. We support and invest in innovation at every stage of the journey – from classroom to end-customer. With our network of partners we build connections across Europe – together we accelerate the development of market-ready solutions, and create a fertile environment in which we can sell the innovative results of our work. Through our Business Creation Services, the organisation invests and assists in the rapid growth of companies focused on the energy sector. Until now, the company has received over 2,000 applications and invested in over 170 start-ups across Europe.
2bpartner is an autonomous venture capital management firm, subject to supervision by the CMVM [Portuguese Securities Market Commission], considered 2015 “Investment Firm of the Year” at the UP Awards. 2bpartner’s participation - in representation of the funds it manages - aims to add value to the financial contributions by means of a hands-on monitoring policy, characterised by a maintaining a strong close relationship with the portfolio companies throughout the investment period. 2bpartner is currently structuring the launch of a new fund, to be implemented in the first quarter of 2017, aimed at venture capital and, in particular, at the start-up capital stage.