Allume Energy has recently been announced as one of the Sustainability Leaders by the Australian Financial Review – and we couldn’t be prouder! The list features some incredible Australian innovators and we’re delighted to be named amongst them. All working together for a greener and more sustainable future.
The SolShare is the world’s first and only hardware solution for sharing rooftop solar for apartments. Using a single rooftop system, multiple apartments in a building can connect and enjoy the benefits of solar energy. On average, an apartment can save $400 every year on electricity bills. Furthermore, each installation saves 15 tonnes of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere each year.
With electricity prices surging all over the world and more people aiming to reduce their carbon footprint, solar energy is becoming ever more popular. There’s an immediately addressable market of $US50 billion across the three main regions for Allume. This means there’s huge room for growth both overseas and in Australia. Furthermore, over 2 million Australians live in apartments and with Allume’s unique technology, it’s not just homeowners with large rooftop spaces that can benefit from solar energy.
Allume Energy won the Innovator Award for the 2022 Financial Review Sustainability Leaders, but within the category of Resources, Energy and Utilities there were a number of incredible companies doing hugely exciting things for a more sustainable future.
The category winner was ResourceCo, a company that has been recycling and repurposing waste materials for the last 30 years. Each tonne of waste that doesn’t end up in a landfill saves a tonne of CO2 from being emptied into the atmosphere. So far, ResourceCo has saved 60 million tonnes of CO2 from being released!
We were also amongst companies like Delorean Corporation, who use anaerobic digestion from organics found in landfill to deliver renewable gas, electricity and heat. Fortescue has set industry-leading targets and aims to be carbon neutral by 2030 and use renewable energy at all mine sites.
In addition to these is Discover Energy, a company that uses technology to sell energy with the aim of providing consumer empowerment, transparency and value to the energy network. They use Mantra, a Virtual Power Plant platform to achieve this.
To find out more about all the companies and winners of the Sustainability Leaders, you can read the full Australian Review article here.
For years, solar energy was restricted to those who had the space to install solar panels. Now, thanks to the SolShare, apartment residents and owners can also receive solar energy. If you’d like to know more about apartment solar and whether your building could benefit from the SolShare, get in touch with the team at Allume Energy.
Being recognized as one of the AFR’s Sustainability Leaders is a huge honour. We’re proud to be amongst such innovative and exciting companies that are really making a difference when it comes to sustainability and the future of our planet.
More than 20 municipal governments in Victoria have taken a significant step forward in shaping the way new apartment property developments could be better for both residents and the environment. This is a huge step in the right direction, and thankfully the team at Allume Energy are in a great position to support developers in meeting these proposed changes with our rooftop solar solution for new apartment developments.
Few people have as much influence in shaping cities as property developers. They take an old building or a parcel of land, and then build homes, retail spaces and offices. These new buildings will be around for many decades to come and leave a lasting impact on the neighbourhood. Whether that impact is a net positive or detrimental to the community depends on a lot of factors. One way that government can ensure that the new apartment developments improve amenity and are comfortable and liveable for their residents that live in them, is through regulations in planning schemes.
In Victoria, Australia, 24 municipal governments have joined to support a “Zero Carbon Developments Joint Planning Scheme Amendment” (JPSA). The effort has been coordinated by the Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment, which has been toiling on this for years, and ensuring the amendments received endorsement from all of the councils.
Under the proposed changes, new apartment buildings and commercial and industrial developments would need to:
> Produce net zero carbon emissions, to reduce climate impact.
> Make buildings more energy efficient, to keep electricity running costs low.
> Better manage water quality, use and collection, to help clean-up our waterways.
> Protect and enhance greening and biodiversity to support pollinators (bees) and keep buildings cool.
> Be more resilient to changing climate impacts.
This is great news, and a step in the right direction for ensuring that apartment buildings in Melbourne and Victoria’s regional cities are easier and cheaper to cool in summer, heat in winter, and are more comfortable for their residents while treading lightly on the environment.
When it comes to renewable energy, the JPSA is strong on ambition. It proposes that new apartment developments have rooftop solar installed with a minimum of:
> 1 kilowatt of solar panel capacity per dwelling; or,
> 25 watts of solar panel capacity per square metre of the building’s footprint.
Allume Energy recommends 1kW of solar capacity per dwelling as a minimum amount that will make a significant difference to electricity bills. The JPSA is therefore in line with our customer guidance. For example, if 10 apartments share at least 10kW of rooftop solar through our SolShare hardware, their electricity bills will reduce by around a third. If they share 20kW, the savings will be between 40 and 50%.
Why is this impact so high, compared to detached home solar installations that are typically 5kW in size? The SolShare constantly monitors electricity consumption by the apartments and sends any generated electricity to the customers that are using power at that point in time, so the solar power supply to an individual apartment is not capped at 1kW.
The 24 municipal governments submitted their proposal to the the Victorian Minister for Planning, the Hon. Lizzie Blandthorn MP, on 21 July. The Minister will need to approve a public exhibition of the proposed changes. If approved, there will be a consultation process that will take at least 6 months. Members of the public will have the opportunity to have their say on the changes. The amendments will then be finalised and put to the Minister for Planning for approval.
If the changes go through, nearly all new apartment buildings will need to meet these standards. If that is something you want to see, make your voice heard if and when the amendments go to public consultation.
If you are looking to develop an apartment building, a good resource on achieving zero carbon developments is provided by the City of Moreland and be sure to contact us to learn how we can help connect the apartment to shared solar.
With more and more people around the world driving Electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles, governments, councils and building owners are having to find ways to implement EV chargers to accommodate them. In this drive to be more sustainable, it raises questions such as whether it’s possible to have a solar EV charger? And if it is, can you have solar power if you live in an apartment or flat? And of course, whether there are other benefits apart from the environmental impact?
These kinds of questions were recently touched on by The Guardian in their recent article on the hurdles apartment dwellers face when it comes to installing EV chargers, where our very own ‘SolShare’ was featured as a potential solution.
For many, the reason they decide to opt for an EV is that it’s better for the environment. No expensive petrol, no fumes in our neighbourhoods, fewer greenhouse gas emissions – it’s a win-win. Charging an EV with solar power makes it even more appealing.
A solar EV charger allows you to charge your vehicle with the solar panels attached to your roof and top it up with energy from the grid when necessary. Some independent chargers even have solar panels attached to them. In terms of appearance, they’re pretty similar to regular EV chargers but there are a lot of benefits to them for both the environment and the vehicle owner.
For many years it was very difficult, if not impossible, for apartment-dwellers to change their electricity system, install a solar EV charging station, or benefit from solar energy at all. Owners and companies believed these changes to be too expensive and unnecessary – but that’s changing. The SolShare is the world’s only hardware that allows multiple apartments to share a single rooftop solar system for an affordable price. Residents (and owners) get to reap the benefits this brings, including installing EV charging stations that run on solar power.
The EV charging stations can be wired in two ways:
So what happens if you have an EV but your neighbour doesn’t? They’re probably not going to be happy paying for their petrol while also using less solar than you because you’re using up all the solar power to charge your car. Thankfully the SolShare automatically registers the amount of solar energy that each apartment receives in a month and can ensure that every unit connected to the system receives the same. So even if one neighbour charges their car, and the others are only home before and after work – everyone gets the same solar benefit.
If the EV chargers are connected to the Common Light and Power, then there are some companies providing a billing service to ensure that the Owners Corporation (also known as a Strata Community or Homeowners Association) recoups the cost of charging from the EV owner on a user pays basis.
Whether they want to or not, property owners can’t deny that the world is changing. Governments are being voted in that have a clearer and greener plan for the future and people have a wider selection of EVs to choose from. As an example Ford has announced that all vehicles sold in Europe will be electric by 2030 and General Motors has said that their factories will only produce electric vehicles by 2035. The European Union recently banned the sale of vehicles that use petrol or diesel from 2035.
So this trend is only going to keep on growing.
The more common it is for people to own EVs the more normal it will be for them to expect a solar EV charger in their home or complex. Property owners who have the intention of renting and who haven’t installed a vehicle charger will be losing out on potential renters or current tenants will leave. As well as this, with rising energy costs – tenants may start looking for complexes where they’ll have access to rooftop solar to help reduce their energy bills.
For many, the worry comes when they think about how solar panels or a solar energy sharing system will change the appearance of their property. Luckily, the SolShare system is discrete and, as the Guardian describes it, ‘about the size of a computer’.
If you’re an EV driver, property owner, or council and you’re considering installing a solar-powered EV charging system then get in touch with us today. We’ll be happy to talk you through the SolShare and how this unique system can help make installing eco-friendly EV chargers easier and the added benefits it will bring.
There’s been a lot of media coverage recently over the unprecedented turmoil in Australia’s energy markets. A combination of factors has caused the steepest increase in wholesale prices for electricity and gas ever experienced, and these high prices are expected to continue well into 2023. While this will have an impact on all households across Australia, one of the hardest hit by the rising energy costs will be those in social housing.
The causes of these increases are due to our reliance on fossil fuels and an ageing grid:
Authorities responsible for price regulation have already approved massive increases to Default Market Offers (the standard electricity contract for homes and small businesses) from 1 July. South Australia’s prices will be going up 20%, Queensland’s by 18%, and New South Wales customers will be hit with a 12% increase.
Research has shown that people on lower incomes spend a larger share of their money on energy bills than people on higher incomes. For the top 20%, energy bills only take up 1-2% of their monthly income. For the bottom 20% of income-earners, energy bills eat up 7% of their monthly budget, and that’s before the energy tariffs are hiked up on 1 July.
When low-income people face massive increases in energy bills, they face stark choices: feed the kids or let them go hungry, pay the rent or fall into arrears with the landlord, or pay the power bill or get threatened with disconnection. Energy hardship payments don’t automatically get increased when power prices rise. This is a situation faced by a million Australians each month, and that number is only going to get higher.
Allume’s existing customer base of over 1000 apartments with rooftop solar, including over 600 social housing dwellings, have the best defence against these steep increases: rooftop solar. Prior to the energy crisis, these residents were already saving around $300-$350 per year compared to the default offer provided by electricity retailers. Now that is set to surge to between $400 and $500 per year. That’s a lot of money for someone on the pension, JobSeeker or the minimum wage.
Considering that it costs next to nothing to maintain a rooftop solar installation, these increased savings on electricity bills will only accelerate the payback period for the capital outlay. To put that in other terms: investing in rooftop solar is now more financially attractive than ever before.
City West Housing is a leading Community Housing Provider in NSW. They connected rooftop solar to 226 apartments in three apartment complexes in their portfolio with Allume’s SolShare technology. See the video below for the real-world benefits experienced by the residents in City West Housing’s Carriageworks community in Everleigh in Sydney’s inner west.
How can we connect as many people as possible as quickly as possible to rooftop solar?
Shared solar installations using Allume’s SolShare technology can connect more people to rooftop solar people in low-income communities per dollar spent than any other approach. Government subsidies can leverage co-investment by Community Housing Providers to get rooftop solar installed as soon as possible.
Successful examples of this approach include Solar Victoria’s rebate of up to $1,400 per dwelling for the installation of rooftop solar by Community Housing Providers. Housing authorities in the Australian Capital Territory and South Australia have outright funded rooftop solar installations on public housing. The City West Housing installations were funded by the NSW Government, but this funding program has since closed.
We need these programs to be continued, expanded and replicated by other states and the Commonwealth Government so we can ensure that the energy crisis doesn’t hurt vulnerable people who are least able to endure it.
If you’d like to find out if the SolShare will be suitable for your new or existing community housing project, get in touch with the team today.
As our populations continue to grow, the need for energy increases, as does the cost of electricity. But there’s another problem we’re all too aware of – the impact greenhouse emissions are having on the environment. Taking all this into account, it’s not surprising that more and more developers and local councils are exploring microgrid solutions.
While not a new concept, they are rapidly increasing in popularity and necessity, with governments worldwide investing in establishing local microgrids.
In this article we’ll have a look at:
A microgrid is a grouping of energy resources within a locally defined area. This could be an apartment complex, neighbourhood, business park, hospital or university campus. Essentially, a microgrid provides access to power for consumers within that set area, so if the main grid ever fails, they are protected from being impacted.
Let’s first zoom out to discuss ‘the grid’. This is the main power hub that connects residential homes, businesses, and most organisations to power so they can use whatever requires energy to run – from lighting to climate control and everything in between. The challenge with the grid is that if a transmission line is damaged by a truck accident or a big storm, then thousands of homes relying on that trunk of the grid can experience brownouts or blackouts. In this scenario, a microgrid could be a safety net.
While they are generally connected to the main grid day-to-day, microgrids can swiftly disconnect and operate autonomously in the event of the main grid failing. They can use solar, wind and other renewable energy sources to generate their own power and store it in batteries for use when there are no renewables. They can also charge their batteries from the main grid using low-capacity transmission lines, forgoing the need to upgrade those transmission lines at significant expense. Some remote microgrids may never need to be hooked up to the main grid and are self-sustaining.
Let’s take a community residential example. If a multi-unit residential complex like an apartment building or condominium is linked in with a local neighbourhood microgrid, it might include apartment solar using a solution such as the SolShare and batteries as part of its mix of energy sources.
In the event of a power outage, any multi-residential complex within the microgrid area will continue to be supported by the coordinated local supply of that grid. For those who have their apartment or unit hooked up to a device such as the SolShare, there will be the added security of additional apartment solar energy stored in the batteries.
For some microgrids that are designed to allow for ‘islanding’, if there’s a storm, or power outage for any reason, having a microgrid set up in your local area can mean continuous energy supply, regardless of what is happening with the main grid. Microgrid solutions can provide a reliable source of energy and peace of mind for communities in remote or regional areas.
By not relying on the main grid, a locally defined area can be ‘energy independent’. This is particularly important for some remote locations, such as rural areas where relying on the main grid might not be a secure option due to low survivability of the transmission lines during bushfires or storms. Microgrids can offer a higher quality of power and energy distribution.
When paired with renewable energy solutions, such as solar panels and solar battery systems, energy costs can be drastically reduced for local areas using microgrids. This is evident when using solar for apartments, with bills being slashed by as much as 30 percent compared to using main grid power.
Having a microgrid set up with solar panels and batteries encourages the use of renewable energy, which is cost-effective and can help reduce emissions which is good news for the environment.
If you’re keen to be less reliant on the main grid and have the most reliable access to energy (while also reducing your power bills), microgrids are certainly worth considering. It’s also worth investigating possible national or local government support in your area. In some instances, grants are available to help you set up these kinds of solutions.
Allume’s vision is a world where everyone can access clean and affordable energy from the sun. Creators of the SolShare, the world’s only hardware solution for multi-residential solar power, we are proud to provide you with the option to reduce your electricity bill and carbon footprint.
Contact us today to discover how you can take control of your electricity usage and access clean energy, no matter where you live.
With over 2.2 million Australians living in apartments, units or flats, it’s great to know that it’s now possible for them to access affordable solar energy solutions. This means that they too can reap the benefits of renewable energy. Australia is the world’s leader in harnessing residential solar, and with the introduction of new tech that enables multiple apartments to connect into single solar energy systems, we are likely to remain in the number one spot. This is just one of the options we’ll discuss in this article when it comes to solar for apartments.
Whether you are a developer, building manager, landlord or tenant, it pays to understand what’s available.
Let’s look at the following:
When you install apartment solar panels on a shared rooftop area, energy generated can be used to power lighting and any other electrical systems like air conditioning. These can be used in common areas such as gyms, recreational settings, lobby and foyers and shared pathways.
This option is preferable if there’s extremely limited roof space or several shared areas that use more energy. It’s likely to be the only option in high-rise buildings. It’s a straightforward solution as only one meter and electricity account is linked to the system. This overall cost can then be split evenly across the apartment owners through the owners corporation or strata corporation.
There will be no direct benefits to the owner-occupiers and renters in the building, as the rooftop solar will not be connected to their apartments.
When there are only a couple of residents interested in having solar for apartments or townhouses, then individual systems could be the way to go. The individual solar installations are placed on the roof and separately connected to electricity meters for individual units. If the building block is a only one or two stories tall, this option can work, as it’s likely there will be sufficient roof space to fit each apartment’s individual system panels.
Yes. If you own the apartment you will need the approval of the owner’s corporation or strata corporation to install the system. This will require a motion to be passed at a meeting, which may raise questions as to why common roof space is being reserved for solar that won’t benefit all the apartments.
If you are a tenant, you will need to speak with your landlord or agent to get permission to install solar panels, and in turn, it’s most likely that they will need approval from the corporation. You will also need to pay for them, or persuade your landlord to pay for them, which may be a challenge!
It can be costly to install an individual system, plus there could be tension in the owners committee/strata corporation of available roof space and roof space ownership to contend with. It is with these downsides in mind that we created the SolShare – which enables shared solar for apartments.
With this option, a single rooftop solar installation can be shared between multiple neighbours within the same apartment building. Currently, there is only one company that has developed and offers the technology to support this new approach.
Here at Allume Energy, we are proud to offer the SolShare.
To ensure that this setup is fair for everyone, The SolShare provides the same amount of solar energy to each residence over one month but supplies it as it is required by each apartment. Our solution also includes monitoring, so users know how much solar power and grid power they are using.
Any apartment that is metered can be connected to the SolShare. Common areas can also be powered with this system. Anyone who doesn’t want to participate can ‘opt out’.
Throughout each month, the SolShare algorithm monitors and logs the quantity of solar energy delivered to and used by each apartment. It also ensures that every dwelling connected to the system receives the same amount.
This means that even if your neighbour is using a high amount of solar energy, you will still receive the same solar benefit as them over the month.
Advancements in solar technology have made it possible to reap the benefits of solar power for all dwelling types, including apartment buildings. Whether you want to power shared common areas, opt for an individual solar system or are ready to explore a world-first technology, we have the solution. The SolShare is easy to install, financially straight forward and an affordable process.
The SolShare is the world’s only hardware for solar sharing within apartment buildings. Whether you’re a developer, building manager, landlord or tenant, there are many benefits to tapping into solar energy and this world-first technology makes solar for apartments possible.
To discover if The SolShare can work for you and your complex, contact the team at Allume today!
People are increasingly making the switch to solar energy for their homes in Australia and being one of the sunniest locations on the planet, it makes sense. Down Under we have had the highest uptake of solar across the globe with more than 2.68 million rooftop systems installed as of the end of 2020 – that’s one in four homes with solar power. The fact is, it’s a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and save money on your electricity bills. This is great for owners of detached homes, but can you still take advantage of solar power in an apartment?
The answer is, yes! In this article, we will explore how solar energy systems can work with apartment buildings and the benefits of renewable energy systems in high-rise living.
As you are probably aware, solar panels work by converting sunlight into electricity. The solar panels are installed on your roof or in another sunny location, and they use the sun’s rays to generate power. This power can then be used to run your appliances and lighting, or you can sell it back to the grid.
At Allume Energy, we have created the ‘SolShare’ – an industry-first technology to ensure that apartment dwellers can benefit from solar energy in the same way a resident of a free-standing house can.
The SolShare allows all residents in a single building to share one rooftop solar installation. Sharing solar means only using solar electricity when you need it and letting your neighbours use it when you don’t. Inevitably you will have a different schedule and lifestyle to your neighbours, in that your electricity usage and needs will be at various intervals throughout a period that will differ from theirs.
You will receive your portion of solar energy when you need to use it and when you will save the most money.
The way we have created our solution also means residents are free to choose which electricity retailer they want to go with.
That’s the beauty of our solution. The solar is directed from the single system on the rooftop only to those apartments which are connected to the SolShare behind their meter.
At this stage, the SolShare is compatible with apartment buildings that have a minimum of five dwellings, up to a maximum of 60 apartments (per building).
Our renewable energy solution can be installed into:
There were a few options that existed before SolShare for apartment solar power access, but they were complex to set up and administer, with some including blockchain-based trading solutions and individual systems.
It was due to the complexities that apartment solar didn’t experience a huge up-take. Our sustainable solution is the first financially straightforward and affordable option to rooftop solar for apartments and it’s raising the roof on the industry.
There are a number of benefits to installing a SolShare system in your apartment block, including:
Perhaps the most obvious benefit is that you will be able to reduce your monthly electricity bill. On average, an apartment connected to a SolShare, will see a 35-40% reduction in grid electricity bills.
The SolShare’s sharing algorithm responds to each neighbour’s usage instantaneously, which directs the solar to where it’s needed to maximise consumption and savings.
By producing your own energy, you will be doing your part to reduce your carbon footprint and help fight climate change. Each year, a typical SolShare will reduce CO2 emissions by 28 tonnes.
Another great benefit of solar panels is that they can increase the value of your apartment. If you ever decide to sell, potential buyers will be impressed by the fact that your apartment is powered by renewable energy. This could give you a competitive edge in the market.
Finally, solar panels are a great way to reduce your reliance on the grid. If your SolShare rooftop installation is also connected to a battery energy storage system and there is ever an outage or you lose power for some other reason, you may still be to stay powered up. This can be especially helpful during emergencies when the grid is down.
The benefits of switching to solar energy are well documented, from lowering carbon footprint and saving on electricity bills, to increasing property value.
SolShare is the most simple and affordable solution to rooftop solar for apartments and the world’s only hardware for solar sharing within apartment buildings.
Whether you’re a developer, building manager, landlord or tenant, there are many benefits to tapping into solar energy and this world-first technology makes it possible.
Proudly Australian made, SolShare is creating further jobs and investment in Australia. Contact us to find out more and if our apartment solar panels solution is right for your building or next project.
Led by Taronga Ventures and The Schmidt Family Foundation, $6 million in new funding positions the company for international expansion into North American and European markets
(MELBOURNE, Aus.) – Allume Energy, the developer of a world-first solar sharing system, has announced the close of an AUD $6 million Series A round that will accelerate an expansion into international markets and grow its Australian operations.
Co-led by Taronga Ventures’ RealTech Ventures Fund and The Schmidt Family Foundation, the investment represents a commitment to tackling the carbon footprint of the real estate industry that will help to unlock solar energy for historically hard-to-reach multi-tenanted buildings, such as apartments and business offices.
Allume’s SolShare system is the world’s first solar distribution system that can scale the benefits of rooftop solar for the tens of millions of apartment buildings across the U.S. and Europe. The SolShare system removes the barriers to entry for multi-dwelling residents and allows solar providers to offer shared solar.
To date, more than 50 systems have been installed across Australia and the product has been certified for installation in the U.K. and the U.S. Allume’s installations are estimated to have saved in excess of 24,000 tonnes of CO2, with the company looking to achieve lifetime savings of over 100,000 tonnes of CO2 by early 2022.
“As demand increases for renewable energy sources such as rooftop solar, a huge proportion of the population risks being left behind in the energy transition,” said Cameron Knox, Allume co-founder and CEO. “At Allume, we are committed to breaking down barriers to rooftop solar to provide cheaper, cleaner energy to underserved communities across the globe.”
The financing will accelerate the company’s growth and expansion, which will drive the creation of thousands of clean energy jobs globally. In the U.S, Allume is delivering solar with no upfront cost to affordable housing with support from non-profit Elemental Excelerator, as well as expanding to the large multi-family market on the West Coast. In the U.K, Allume is working with Centrica-backed SNRG to provide rooftop solar to public housing in Greater London and newly built apartments across the region.
According to Jonathan Hannam, Managing Partner at Taronga Ventures: “Global real estate investors and institutional capital are now focused on driving sustainability through their underlying real estate portfolios. Thus, we are constantly looking for world leading emerging technology companies – like Allume – to help deliver our sustainability goals.”
“From a technical perspective, Allume Energy delivers a unique technology that allows the owners of multi-tenanted buildings to share solar power across tenants,” said Dr. Sven Sylvester, Investment Director at Taronga Ventures. “We are looking forward to working with our real estate partners to achieve their net-zero goals through the installation of Allume Energy’s technology.”
“Cities are where the vast majority of the global population resides, and many of these people live in multi-family buildings,” said Jamie Dean, director of impact investing for The Schmidt Family Foundation. “This venture helps democratize renewable energy access by ensuring that clean, distributed solar energy is accessible to renters and owners alike. The distributed power production facilitated by Allume’s technology also makes power grids more resilient, which is of huge importance.”
The investment round is also supported by Trawalla Group, the family office of Alan and Carol Schwartz.
More information about Allume Energy and the SolShare system is available at allumeenergy.com.
About Allume Energy
Melbourne-based Allume Energy has developed a system that can deliver solar energy to apartments and businesses in a simple and affordable way. Their Australian Made technology, called the SolShare, enables the power generated from a single rooftop solar system to be shared between multiple apartments or businesses within the same building. Allume Energy won the Clean Energy Council’s Innovation Award in 2020, is a portfolio company of Elemental Excelerator and an alum of Free Electrons and the Melbourne Accelerator Program.
About The Schmidt Family Foundation
Established in 2006 by Wendy and Eric Schmidt, The Schmidt Family Foundation (TSFF) works to advance the wiser use of energy and natural resources and to support efforts worldwide that empower communities to build resilient systems for food, water, and human resources. Through community-, market- and technology-based approaches, TSFF promotes an intelligent relationship between human activity and the planet’s natural resources.
About Taronga Ventures, the RealTech Ventures Fund and RealTechX
Taronga Ventures, through its RealTech Ventures Fund, is a technology and innovation investor focused on innovation for the built environment. The Fund is an institutional venture fund that invests into globally scalable entities that will enhance or challenge the way real estate is designed, procured, financed, developed and managed across all sectors. The Fund is focused on developing a diverse portfolio covering sustainability, design, materials and software and provides capital, mentorship and global networks for those companies in which it invests, as well as first mover advantage for the corporates that participate in the Fund. Taronga Ventures has extensive experience across global markets and asset classes and is supported by strategic and institutional partners across Asia, the Middle East and Europe. RealTechX is Asia’s first government supported, industry-focused independent scale-up program for companies impacting real estate and the wider built world.
For media enquiries relating to Allume Energy:
M: +61 413 766 792
For media enquiries relating to The Schmidt Family Foundation:
Director of Communications, The 11th Hour Project/The Schmidt Family Foundation
M: +1 718 569 2629
For media enquiries relating to Taronga Ventures:
Managing Partner, Taronga Ventures
M: +61 402 444 170
Allume Energy was founded in 2015 out of one realisation and one idea. The realisation was that the price of rooftop solar was dropping year-on-year, and would inevitably be attractive to all electricity consumers. The idea was that it would be possible to setup an “electricity retailer on your roof”, i.e. rooftop solar for no-upfront cost, to compete with the grid.
The company has evolved a lot since those initial concepts. We narrowed our focus to apartment residents and multitenant buildings. And we developed a world-first technology, the SolShare, that can address this market, because we realised there was no existing way of serving these customers.
Now we have come full circle. Allume has been featured in an article by Duncan Murray in The Fifth Estate on our new partnership with Sunshine Coast-based energy retailer LPE where we are providing rooftop solar at no upfront cost to apartment residents. This innovative model means that apartment residents can opt-in to LPE’s retail electricity service and have solar power included on the same bill. This drives down electricity costs for apartment residents, and improves the environmental credentials of the apartment building.
Damien Glanville, CEO of LPE, is quoted in The Fifth Estate on the challenges of rooftop solar for apartments:
“Putting on a single solar system for every apartment, which we have done, is too difficult and it’s too messy. You’ve got too much equipment that typically you don’t have the space for.”
The Allume SolShare is the solution to this problem. By sharing one rooftop solar installation for multiple customeres in the same building, it removes the need for each apartment to have its own PV inverter. It also ensures that there is maximised consumption of solar onsite. Furthermore, as the SolShare can turn solar on and off to specific apartments, its pervents the stranding of assets due to churn if a customer moves out of the building.
For apartment residents, it’s a straightforward way to contribute to a greener future, and save money on their electricity bills at the same time.
If you would like to learn more about the Allume’s SolShare technology, contact us.
The PM met Planet Innovation’s technicians on the line and learned how the SolShare technology works and how it is opening-up new markets for rooftop solar. The PM discussed with the manufacturing team the complex steps involved in the SolShare’s assembly and the types of skilled work involved in building smart energy products.
Allume Energy is proud that the SolShare is Australian Made and creating manufacturing jobs in Australia. As the SolShare is a world-first product that is opening up untapped markets for rooftop solar (apartments and multitenant social housing), we are also creating jobs in electrical trades and engineering.
The SolShare is one of many home-grown smart energy technologies that can help drive Australia’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. There is growing recognition both globally and in Australia that smart energy technologies are driving an unstoppable transition of our energy system, and that this will create new industries and drive job creation for decades to come.
If you would like to learn more about the SolShare, contact us.
Thanks for your interest, PM!