With its innovative recycling process, Solar Materials closes the raw material cycle of photovoltaic modules and thus makes a valuable contribution to improving the resource efficiency and CO2 balance of solar modules.
Photovoltaics is one of the pillars of the energy transition and thus an indispensable component of the future energy mix. Solar modules are at the center of this: high-tech composite products that, in addition to glass and plastic, contain a lot of valuable metals, above all silicon, copper and silver. However, these are lost through current recycling processes and end up unused in landfills.
Solar Materials’ recycling process is the first in the world to allow recovery of all raw materials, and is not only environmentally but also economically sustainable.
Why we invested
Ecologically and economically sustainable
In addition to the company’s vision to achieve full recovery of all raw materials in solar module recycling, we were particularly convinced by the fact that Solar Materials’ process is more than economically viable.
We also quickly agreed that the dynamic and motivated team has the necessary skills to take the startup to the next level.
- Solar Materials’ core innovation consists of a unique combination of patent-pending process steps and essential know-how.
- The startup is addressing an incredibly exciting growth and future mega market (in Germany alone, the amount of solar modules to be recycled will grow to well over 5 million modules per year by 2030).
- In addition to the economic potential of the process, we were also convinced by the positive environmental aspect and the contribution to shaping circular value creation.
Our operational approach
As an experienced early-stage investor, we can provide particularly strong support to young startups through our value-add.
Thus, we not only support our portfolio company with our VC infrastructure (accounting, controlling, legal, HR), but also contribute our expertise as a sparring partner in all entrepreneurial and strategic issues as well as in the daily business.
In addition to intensive feedback on the business model and its fine-tuning as well as the planning of management processes, marketing and sales activities, we also provided Solar Materials with concrete support in setting up the company location in Magdeburg.
Solar Materials is at the beginning of a steep growth curve and was able to raise respectable seed financing with its technical prototype and a solid, economically highly attractive business model.
In addition to expanding the patent base, the focus is now on upscaling the process, as the first industrial recycling line with an annual capacity of approximately 4,500 tons is expected to be established by as early as 2023. Stay tuned!