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Get to know your enemies until you buy them: Shell takes over home battery maker Sonnen

The oil company Shell continues its commitment in the field of renewable energy. Now the company buys a competitor for Tesla’s Powerwalls from the Allgäu.

The Dutch-British energy company Royal Dutch Shell has completely taken over the German home battery manufacturer Sonnen. After Shell had already entered Sun as an investor in May 2018, the company is now becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Shell New Energies, Sun announced on February 15. The antitrust authorities would still have to agree to the takeover. The purchase price was not mentioned.

Job market Bosch Group, Schwieberdingen Dataport, Altenholz near Kiel

Sonnen claims to have already installed more than 40,000 batteries worldwide, making it the market leader in intelligent power storage systems. For this purpose, the company uses only lithium iron phosphate batteries (LiFePO4). Sonnen currently offers energy storage with a capacity of up to 48 kilowatt hours with an inverter output of up to 9.9 kilowatts.

Home battery as a component of the energy transition

Home batteries are an important building block for the energy transition and, in conjunction with a photovoltaic system, can secure an almost self-sufficient energy supply for households. They can also be connected with heat pumps and combined heat and power plants. At charging stations for electric cars, battery buffers can also compensate for load peaks. Innogy commissioned a test facility in Duisburg in October 2018.

The electric car manufacturer Tesla also has so-called Powerwalls on offer, which are used for example in Australia as a large network storage. In combination with solar shingles on the roof, they should also enable their own power supply.

Shell heavily involved in charging networks

Sonnen co-founder and chief executive officer Christoph Ostermann explained that the company hopes to continue growing dynamically in a rapidly developing market. With this investment, the company “could now enable more households to become energy independent and benefit from entirely new opportunities in the energy market”.

Shell has already supported or acquired numerous alternative drive companies in recent years. So the company participates in Ionity, the charging system operator of the German automakers. Also at its own gas stations, the group wants to set up charging stations. The Group also owns the Dutch mobility service New Motion. In January 2019, Shell New Energies bought the US loading startup Greenslots.

Also published on Medium.

Published inStartups

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