Bristol-born green tech company OVO has today announced a strategic investment from Mitsubishi Corporation for a 20% stake in the business for £200 million.
They’ll be using the proceeds of Mitsubishi Corporation’s strategic investment to expand into new markets across Europe and Asia Pacific and accelerate the development of its intelligent energy technologies unit, Kaluza. This new division within the OVO portfolio develops and manages software and hardware to support the integration of electric vehicles and dynamic battery storage onto the grid.
Ovo expects that dynamic charging and other integration technologies will be essential in the transition from energy use being two-thirds fossil fuels in 2017 to two-thirds renewable energy by 2050. A recent analysis from Imperial College London indicates that the market value of integrating energy devices, such as EV-to-grid chargers and dynamic batteries, could be up to £6.9bn per year in the UK alone, globally this figure could be 76 times as much (or £525bn).
Stephen Fitzpatrick, Founder and CEO of OVO, said: “Transitioning away from fossil fuels is the biggest challenge we face in the 21st Century. The costs of EVs, battery storage and wind and solar power have fallen dramatically in recent years, but it’s becoming increasingly complex to integrate them onto the grid. To succeed, we will need to develop new technology and redesign the energy system around the customer. We want to be at the forefront of that global, tech-enabled transition to a zero carbon energy system. This investment from Mitsubishi Corporation will help us get there.”
OVO was founded locally in 2009 to disrupt the UK energy market. The business has grown rapidly over the past decade to become the largest UK independent energy supplier with over 1.5 million customers. Expanding into smart home services and investing heavily in new technologies including energy storage and electric vehicle charging, the company launched the world’s first for electric vehicles last year.
The deal is a strategic investment for Mitsubishi Corporation, a global integrated business enterprise headquartered in Japan, which has approximately 6,200 MW of energy assets under management and operation worldwide which is roughly equivalent to energy supply for 8.5 million households. Mitsubishi Corporation is present across the entire renewable energy value chain, owning and operating renewable energy assets, energy trading, manufacturing lithium-ion batteries and investing in distributed renewable energy projects including energy storage.