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Ignitis Innovation Fund Is Investing Together With Bill Gates Fund Into the Start-up Developing Green Hydrogen

By March 10, 2021 4   min read  (675 words)

March 10, 2021 |

Fuel cells works, Ignitis Innovation Fund Is Investing Together With Bill Gates Fund Into the Start-up Developing Green Hydrogen
  • Ignitis Innovation Fund invested in Israel-based start-up H2Pro additional EUR 430,000
  • Breakthrough Energy Ventures, established by Bill Gates, and Horizons Ventures, which invests into tech giants, have also directed their funds towards the company which develops green hydrogen production.
  • From the first investment into H2Pro in 2019, the company grew several times in value.

Ignitis Innovation Fund managed by Contrarian Ventures has invested additional EUR 430,000 into the Israel-based company H2Pro developing green hydrogen production technology. It is already the third round of investments into start-up creating a more environment-friendly hydrogen technology. H2Pro is also invested in by world-renowned venture capital fund Breakthrough Energy Ventures, established by Bill Gates, with managed assets worth over USD 2 billion.

The total amount in this investment round into H2Pro reaches EUR 18.5m. Breakthrough Energy Ventures invested EUR 5.3m and Horizons Ventures – EUR 1.65m. The latter has a history of investments into tech giants such as Facebook, Spotify, Zoom and others. 

“Ignitis Innovation Fund is constantly looking for the most promising energy start-ups and companies which are in the early stage of development that contribute to the rapid transformation of the sector and decarbonisation. We can confidently say that hydrogen is the future energy source and, currently, a special focus is directed towards developing and improving its green production technologies. The team at H2Pro is working on exactly that. The third round of investments into the start-up proved that the huge potential of the company’s area of expertise is also recognised by the risk capital funds managed by renowned individuals”, said the Ignitis Group Chair of the Management Board and CEO Darius Maikštėnas.

The first round of investments by Ignitis Innovation Fund into H2Pro, which was in autumn 2019, amounted to over EUR 250,000. At that time, the investments into Israel-based start-up also came from vehicle manufacturer Hyundai and several others risk capital funds and strategic investors.

It is estimated that from the first round of Fund investments in 2019, the market value of H2Pro grew several times.

One of the objectives of the Israel-based company is planning to bring the cost of renewable hydrogen production to fossil fuel-derived levels in the next several years.

The team at H2Pro is developing an innovative, clean, inexpensive and safe hydrogen production technology which is called E-TAC (Electrochemical-Thermally Activated Chemical). It also produces 30% more hydrogen than traditional electrolysis per kWh.

The unique technology developed by H2Pro can be adopted in the industry sectors that produce the most CO2 emissions such as cement or fertilizer production, oil refining.

Hydrogen technology is considered as one of the components enabling ambitious goals of renewable energy.  The development of the technology is now being supported by the largest EU states, which have prepared hydrogen development and application strategies. They establish intent to develop high-capacity hydrogen production capacities as well as develop infrastructure for distributing pure hydrogen.

Ignitis Group, together with other 18 companies and business associations, has also joined in November last year the Lithuanian Hydrogen Platform – one of the most significant initiatives to decarbonise the energy sector. The Group will contribute to the development of hydrogen technologies, in order to be able to use hydrogen as a green energy in the future and as a solution for energy storage.

Among the objectives set by the Hydrogen Platform, there is an objective to actively contribute towards forming the national hydrogen strategy and suggestions of various legislative initiatives that would stimulate the hydrogen technology development in Lithuania.

Established in 2017, Ignitis Innovation Fund has already invested about EUR 6m into 17 companies in seven countries that create new technologies in energy and e-mobility industries that could be applied in the Ignitis Group activities. The Fund has invested into start-ups together with 40 other co-investors, among them there are such renowned companies as vehicle manufacturers Hyundai and Honda as well as an energy giant BP.

Innovation Fund is one of the four directions of Ignitis Group Innovation Hub, which aims to acquire talents and innovations of energy sector and stimulate the economic growth of energy start-ups.

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