Many cleantech companies are large scale companies who aim to work with the utilities, who require millions in investments for R&D, production facilities, and rolling out their product. Quickly one forgets about the smaller players, and one of those smaller players is Tuulivoimala, who develops and markets wind and solar power solutions to private customers, and who are quite successful with their venture.
While there are some forward thinking utilities around the world, who produce energy from 100% renewable sources, it is for the most part not 100% renewable energy which comes from your electricity outlet if you buy that energy. Not happy about this, there is an increasing market of people who do decide to go off-grid and produce their own electricity and heat, and those people represent Tuulivoimala’s market. The company started in May of 2007 and has delivered close to two thousand wind turbines to date, and their outlook for 2010 is positive with a growth estimate of 20% for this year.
The company offers different solutions for people who want to produce their own energy, from wind turbines for battery charging, heat generation and electricity production to combinations of wind and solar solutions, as well as inverters, batteries and other accessories you need when producing your own wind energy. Their wind turbines produce energy in the range of 200W to 20kW, and their customers are summer cottage owners, SME industrial properties and small real estates. Besides selling wind turbines and solar/ wind small-scale power plants, they also develop an energy control system for wind turbines and other renewable energy sources, which is funded by Tekes.
The wind turbines the company sells through their network of dealers are at the moment made in China, but Tuulivoimala is working with a Finnish wind turbine manufacturer and aims to produce locally as well as in Germany in the not-to-distant future. The company has a couple of investors who have put a few EUR 100k into the company, and they are looking for more VC funds to finance projects with them.
I believe the company is up to something, as there is an increasing number of people want to get clean, sustainable energy while not relying on the utilities to provide it. Providing them a simple, all-in-one package to make the first step to go producing their own energy is a lucrative venture, which pays off for the company and its investors, as well as their users who will be able to save money in the long-term, and even earn money if they feed power into the grid. It shows that it’s not only the big players who generate a lot of dividends and jobs, but also the smaller entrepreneurs who can create value for their investors, customers and society.