Portuguese climate tech startup Cleanwatts, which develops renewable energy communities, i.e., groups of individuals who organize themselves to produce and share locally energy generated from renewable sources, opens in Italy.
The arrival in Italy follows a few months after the closing of the round raised last June and led by the impact fund Idun, managed by Verdane, which committed to invest up to €25 million. Cleanwatts was assisted in setting up the Italian branch by B&C Tax and B&C Legal.
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Cleanwatts is building more than 80 energy communities
Ivo Gattulli, Head of Country Italy at Cleanwatts, explained, “Thanks to the entry into force of Decree-Law 162/19 (Article 42bis) and its implementing measures, such as ARERA’s Resolution 318/2020/R/eel and the MISE’s Ministerial Decree of September 16, 2020, electricity consumers in Italy can now associate to produce locally, through renewable sources, the electricity necessary for their needs, sharing it. In addition to the environmental benefits of renewable energy production, renewable energy communities can gain a significant energy cost advantage by self-producing and distributing energy internally.”
Cleanwatts is building more than 80 energy communities, some of which are already operational. Currently, the company manages and controls two terawatt-hours of energy, or the equivalent of the annual consumption of more than 500,000 households, and manages more than 15 MW of aggregate rooftop PV capacity through Cleanwatts OS, its modular operating system designed to manage energy communities.
Cleanwatts REC members can reduce their average energy costs by up to 60 percent. Community members can include residents, commercial and industrial businesses, municipal buildings, schools, hospitals, and universities that collectively contribute to the clean energy transition by promoting energy efficiency, reducing electricity bills and creating jobs in the local economy.
The company operates in Italy, Portugal, Spain, and the United States and has expansion plans in Europe and Asia, and in 2021 reported a 65 percent year-over-year increase in revenue, and in 2022 expects revenue growth of more than 200 percent. To meet the growing market demand for its services, the company plans to increase its workforce by 50 percent in the next 6-12 months, adding more than 40 resources to the current team of 70 people located in Europe and the United States.
Michael Pinto, CEO, and founder of Cleanwatts commented at the closing of the round, “Mitigating the rising cost of energy and supply constraints while meeting the growing demand for electricity and achieving decarbonization goals is a huge global challenge. Fortunately, digitally enabled renewable energy communities are now an effective and efficient solution to address these issues. A wide range of viable technologies and regulatory frameworks are finally available to our society to overhaul its relationship with energy and pave the way for a cleaner, more equitable, and more sustainable future. We are proud to partner with Verdane to address the rapid paradigm shift toward a more efficient and resilient decentralized energy grid.”
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First published in Be Beez, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.
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