Solivus, the pioneer of new ‘skin-like’ solar panels, has secured £2.4 m investment, led by Founders Factory and G-Force and supported by Crowdcube investors, to fund expansion plans putting solar power at the heart of the UK’s energy generation.
To mitigate the climate crisis and overcome crippling energy prices, the UK needs to treble its solar capacity within the next decade. Solar is the cheapest form of energy in the world yet Britain is currently generating less than half the proportion of Spain, Germany and Netherlands.
The greatest potential to upend the energy market lies with fitting rooftop solar technology - like Solivus' ultra-thin solar film - to commercial buildings, which London mayor Sadiq Khan said last month is essential to London becoming the first city in the world to reach zero-carbon by 2030.
The seed investment sees Solivus join the Founders Factory G-Force sustainability seed programme where it will spend the next six months rapidly scaling its business - using the funding to grow its commercial rooftop business and mass market its recently launched ‘portable’ solar sculpture for homeowners
Solivus says its flexible, organic thin-film solar (OPV) panels that can be wrapped around the flat roofs of warehouses, stadiums and large offices is a more practical alternative to traditional clunky solar panels. The firm has recently appointed Juliet Davenport OBE - the founder and ex-CEO of the UK’s first 100% renewable electricity supplier Good Energy - as a board adviser.
Jo Parker-Swift, CEO of Solivus, said: “Amid the escalating climate and energy crisis, powering our homes and businesses with clean energy is no longer a ‘nice to have’ but an absolute necessity. With this new funding, we want to scale our business and maximise the disruptive potential of our ultra-thin and lightweight solar solutions by facilitating a new generation of solar users ready to have a positive impact on the planet.”
Marian Gazdik, Managing Director at G-Force, said: “We’re excited to invest in Solivus as we can see its immense potential to transform how solar tech is used in the built environment and residential homes. Indeed, fitting their thin-film solar solutions to commercial buildings and accelerating the transition to sustainable energy of the UK’s electricity - that’s exciting. Solivus is THE climate-tech startup to watch - with innovative technology, an impressive leadership team and mission-driven investors.”
Louis Warner, Chief Operating Officer at Founders Factory, said: "We face a perfect storm when it comes to energy. Households and businesses are feeling the pinch in their pockets from traditional providers, governments are struggling to fulfill COP26 commitments and our world is heating up. With the green premium so low on solar power, this is the most attractive alternative energy source at our disposal right now. Solivus has an impressive team and their patented technology, the Solivus Arc, coupled with their thin-film approach to commercial buildings, has Founders Factory and G-Force very excited to invest and help scale the company."
Testament to its disruptive potential, Solivus is already trialing this technology on several high-profile projects including Cotswold airport. The airport is set to become the first airport in the world to use the organic solar technology (Solivus solar panels fitted to the hangar) to not only power the site but also a new generation of hydrogen aircraft.
Meanwhile, for homeowners looking to embrace solar amid soaring energy prices, Solivus is launching its plug and play ‘portable’ Solivus Arcs, using organic solar film in a recyclable structure to provide energy for homes or cars for up to 20 years.
Solivus raised investment following a 480% oversubscribed Crowdcube campaign, bringing the total the business has raised to £5 m.