The energy management is challenging for most small- and medium-sized companies, which face high energy costs, technical complexities and regulatory, social and marketpressure to be more sustainable. To advance their energy demand management, Haris, Joel, Lucy and Florian develop a digital platform that – with the help of artificial intelligence – can predict the share of renewable energies in the power grid of tomorrow. As team Endeema, they envision to support the integrated energy consumption, increase the grid flexibility and stability, and create knowledge throughout the market.
1. Why did you join ‘The Mission’ and how did you come together as a team?
Joel: I joined ‘The Mission’ to solve the pressing and growing problem of renewables’ intermittency in energy grids and the high cost of electricity for SMEs. We came together as a team as we discussed our ideas together on the Futury Ideation Platform and discovered our complementary skill sets and compatible longer-term motivations.
Haris: I joined ‘The Mission’ to be part of the sustainable journey towards a better world. Thanks to Futury, I got the opportunity to meet like-minded people and discuss our idea on the Futury Ideation Platform that later guided us to form our team.
Lucy: The purpose of ‘The Mission’ and Futury resonated with me since I’m always looking for opportunities to use my technical skills to accelerate sustainable development. After the initial team formed, I joined to push the technological developments forward. The Futury team did a great job in matching us based on skills and personal ambitions.
Florian: ‘The Mission’ as an incubator for startups, tackling climate change and energy, responds to my professional and personal motivations. I have seen the consequences of pollution from energy production in my previous work and I am deeply convinced that it is the challenge of the coming decades to build a more sustainable world. I want to contribute to the success of this challenge.
2. What sustainability challenge (within the energy sector) is the most pressing in your opinion?
Joel: Besides the challenge of battery storage, developing grid flexibility to cope with the intermittency of renewables is the most pressing energy sector challenge.
Haris: Empowering the grid to feed renewables according to the energy demand to its fullest extent.
Lucy: The most pressing challenge I see in the sector is addressing the long-term resilience of renewable energy. Furthermore, starting the conversation about our future with various stakeholders, especially since politics make or break the future of alternative energy sources.
Florian: Coming from the humanities and social sciences, I believe that change needs tocome from within ourselves, the businesses we operate and, in general, the systems we create. I believe that we must come to a more efficient, smart way of using energy, especially when it is produced from renewable, natural resources.
3. How will your solution change the sector?
Joel: Our solution will improve the coincidence of electricity demand with renewables supply and, thereby, lower costs for utilities, SMEs and end-users of theirproducts – both domestically and internationally. Moreover, it will facilitatethe growth of renewables in the energy grid and reduce greenhouse gas emissionsfrom the burning of fossil fuels to supply electricity when the sun doesn’t shine,and when the wind doesn’t blow.
Haris: Our solution will empower SMEs to better manage their energy demand withintermittent renewable energy. In a broader aspect, our solution will be thefirst step towards grid flexibility to match supply with demand.
Lucy: Endeema aims to make energy demand management smart and easy to understand so that power-intensive industries can shift to using more renewable energy. The aim is to introduce a technologically advanced and modern solution to replace the traditional approaches, leading to a reduction in GHG emissions.
Florian: Endeema’s solution will enable businesses to plan their operations when prices are low, and to source power from renewables. At scale, we will supply smart solutions in form of platforms, apps, automated software and devices to everyone, enabling energy systems to become smart enough to forecast, plan and match efficiently with supply. Therefore, we contribute to the change of our electrical infrastructure towards a more connected, more interactive system.
4. Which corporate partners are you working with,and how has this collaboration helped you so far?
Joel: We are working with Uniper, Techem, Siemens and Schaeffler to examine the energy efficiency, renewables’ intermittency, and electricity cost challenges for German SMEs. These collaborations have helped us with customer interviews, user validation, prototyping, industry knowledge, networking, and research.
Haris: We are working with Uniper, Techem, Siemens and Schaeffler to validate our hypotheses and receive valuable feedback on our progress. We are so grateful to have this opportunity to meet corporate partners within Futury’s ‘The Mission’ program.
Lucy: Due to the range of corporate partners, we were able to get input from Schaeffler, Siemens, Techem and Uniper when forming our business idea. The value of working so closely with them was feedback on user validation, prototyping and general business advice.
Florian: Closest, we have worked with Schaeffler, Uniper, Techem and Siemens. EspeciallySchaeffler opened a network of experts working on solutions that supply and facilitate our idea. Uniper, as a major energy supplier and an immense network of professionals, challenges us with a weekly meeting. Tremendously valuable hints on the energy sector in Germany and the entrepreneurial world is given to us by Siemens.
5. What role does Futury play during ‘The Mission’?
Joel: Futury supports each start-up from team formation to ideation to prototyping and launch, with a close network of top industry and mentoring experts, weekly touchpoints, and a range of organizational and material support.
Haris: Starting from team building, ideation, validation to build the first MVP, Futury provides a lot support in terms of office space, mentoring, workshops, relevant networks, and other startup support.
Lucy: Futury does a great job in facilitating the program and supporting each team individually with research material, an extensive network besides the program partners, and feedback.
Florian: It is thanks to Futury that Endeema has found its team as it is. Futury does agreat job in facilitating the aggregation of skills, interests, and potential of different talents on their Ideation Platform. During ‘The Mission’, we feel that we have an open ear from Futury for every concern, whether it is personal or professional. The support from Bain & Company is to be noted here aswell – their honest and challenging feedback is kickstarting our ideas and helps us to stay on track.
6. And lastly: what do you recommend future talents for their time at ‘The Mission’?
Joel: Interview your co-founders as early as possible to understand their objectives and motivations, and to ensure that your plans align during and preferably also after ‘The Mission’. Understand that this may be the make-or-break task for your start-up as you will work together with your co-founders every day – for at least three months during ‘The Mission’ and if all goes well, many more years thereafter.
Haris: I strongly recommend future talents to utilize the opportunity within ’The Mission’ as much as possible. Start thinking of yourself as an entrepreneur from day one and be in the driver’s seat!
Lucy: Experiment as much as possible during your time at ‘TheMission’ and utilise the network to talk to various people about your project. I also strongly recommend to think about the future of your project collectively as soon as you start to get a feeling of your group’s ambitions and goals.
Florian: As my colleagues mentioned, use every single resource you can find during ‘The Mission’. Try out everything and then decide whether it suits your workflow or not. As an example, we have adopted the scrum method that was introduced to us by Bain & Company. We have tried it out and adjusted it to our needs. As humans, we learn by doing, playing, experimenting, and continuously refining our strategies. Futury offers a playground for your future aspirations as entrepreneurs in the field of sustainability.
With their service-centric approach, team Endeema meets the spirit of our time and their strong alignment as a team paths their way to founding a successful business. We are happy to see that the four minds behind this promising idea – Lucy, Florian, Haris and Joel – have been on the same page from day one regarding their motivations, aspirations, and future endeavors. Moreover, we are happy to hear about their personal experience of ‘The Mission’ and about what they value most about the program and the program’s partners. We cannot wait for their final pitch and wish the team all the best for the upcoming weeks. Spoiler: they already secured a spot at the CyberLab Startup Accelerator, starting in September right after “Energy – BeEmpowered!”.
As always, staytuned and stay healthy,