The Viennese startup enspired, which offers energy trading as a service, lands $8.7 M of fresh capital in a Series A investment round. This new capital is adding to the momentum of enspired to solve a key challenge in the energy transition by making power grids more flexible. The funding round, co-led by Emerald Technology Ventures and 360 Capital – two leading venture capital firms investing in technology that supports the energy transition – will further accelerate the company’s expansion across Europe just 18 months after its inception. Corporate venture capital investors EnBW New Ventures and Helen Ventures are also joining the syndicate together with co-investor i5invest.
Advancing from traditional trading with AI
Founded in 2020, enspired’s mission is to enable a full transition to clean energy by providing power grids with much-needed flexibility. The minds behind enspired – Juergen Mayerhofer (CEO), Wolfgang Eichberger (CTO) and Mario Schmoltzi (CCO) – bring decades of experience in the energy and software industry to the fully digital trading-as-a-service (TaaS) company, using Artificial Intelligence to advance from traditional trading. The young company commercially optimizes power generation, storage, and consumption assets on so-called “spot markets” – short-term power exchanges that help to balance supply and demand.
Mayerhofer explains: “Building new wind and solar parks is only one part of the energy transition equation. Power grids need to be balanced between generation and consumption at all times, and the increasing share of renewables leads to generation that fluctuates with weather and can rarely be predicted in advance with great accuracy. To prevent blackouts, deviations in generation and consumption can be traded on power exchanges, sparing the grid operator from having to take last-minute action”, says the enspired-CEO.
enspired leads the way to trade flexibility
Spot markets have seen skyrocketing growth over the last few years, yet are difficult to understand and hard to enter for most players. “Trading on a short-term energy exchange requires hard-to-find trading talent, a 24/7 shift setup and access to the market. That alone is a big enough hurdle for most players not to bring their flexibility to the exchange,” adds Schmoltzi.
enspired’s TaaS platform not only eliminates entry barriers but promises the most profitable way for its clients to trade flexibility. Eichberger explains the technical edge: “At enspired, all trades get executed in a fully automated fashion using advanced AI-based algorithms that outperform the market. We’re leveraging all available data, taking and executing trading decisions in milliseconds to monetize our clients’ flexibility to the fullest while supporting the grid.”
Tremendous market interest across Europe
This setup has sparked interest from asset owners, storage operators and demand-side resources alike, and the company has seen tremendous market interest across Europe early on. Hans Dellenbach, partner at Emerald Technology Ventures, explains one of the reasons for investing: “enspired’s profit-sharing model means there’s no upfront cost to clients, making it easy to try out. This innovative service design is an incredibly exciting new way to tackle the green energy transition.”
Cesare Maifredi, general partner at 360 Capital, adds: “Making renewable energy and energy storage more valuable while improving the stability of the grid is paramount if we want to tackle climate change. enspired materially contributes to the development of a more sustainable energy market while delivering substantial value to its clients, grid operators and ultimately to our society.”