Since early 2016 Zolar has been in the business of helping residential consumers outfit their homes with photovoltaic systems and thereby reducing their dependency on traditional sources of home electricity.
However, one of the major stumbling blocks of the solar power industry has been the tremendous upfront cost involved when planning and installing a system. Zolar’s solution addresses this issue head-on by offering consumers the option to rent a photovoltaic system for as little as €54/month.
The cost of the monthly rental is calculated based on individual electricity consumption and the size of the installed capacity. Once a 20-year leasing period has concluded, homeowners can buy the entire system for, “a symbolic Euro” and continue to enjoy the benefits of the system for, on average, another ten years.
In recent years we’ve seen Germany, in particular, become a hotbed for competing services all aimed at helping homeowners harness the power of the sun. Enpal, Zolar, Solytic, Sunhero, and We Do Solar all call Berlin home, with outlier 1Komma5° hailing from Hamburg.
While increasing access to more sustainable sources of energy has been the primary objective for these companies since day way, a volatile market, supply chain issues, sanctions, and geopolitics have given the industry an unexpected shot in the arm. In the wallet, as the case may be.
Having received a nod of approval from eco-friendly search engine Ecosia earlier this year, Zolar has just raised €100 million in a Series C. According to the company the investment, which almost doubles the startups’ total amount raised to date, will be used to roll out new digital energy products, including an app update that will see the addition of an energy management system and a dynamic electricity tariff that can automatically determine the best times to run certain processes; charging an EV, for example.
In order to meet a marked uptick in consumer interest, Zolar will also use a portion of the round to expand its current partner network of 500 local craft businesses to 3000 by 2025 as well as open its own training centre aimed at skilling up more technicians to get PV systems installed and homes warmed via the sun.
“Our goal is to supply ten million households in Europe with either a solar system or renewable energy by 2030. The climate crisis, energy security issues and the rising cost of fossil fuels mean we must move very quickly,” explained Zolar CEO and founder Alex Melzer. “By offering a fully digital experience and making it as easy as possible to get started and use solar energy, we help people go green, become energy independent and save costs.”
Zolar’s €100 million Series C round was led by Energy Impact Partners (EIP) and GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund. Existing investors including Inven Capital, Heartcore Capital, Statkraft Ventures, and Pirate Impact Capital also participated in the round.