Dubai Carbon and Innogy International Middle East, is about to launch the first blockchain based crowd investment platform that would allow anyone to participate regardless of investment liquidity.
The move is expected to see impact in the UAE’s investment in solar power.
Ivano Iannelli, CEO of Dubai Carbon stated: “The platform is leveraging the opportunity created under Shams Dubai for companies to avail of rooftop solar for their own energy requirements and therefore provide the investment community with low-risk steady revenue benchmarked at 7 per cent annually for 20 years, and all the socio-environmental benefits of green initiatives.”
Pierre Samaties, CEO of Innogy International Middle East, said: “The usage of block chain technology will revolutionise and accelerate the deployment of renewable energy. It allows for the democratisation of green investment, allowing everyone to participate in funding green investment and contributing to a secure future.”
The Safaqat crowd investment platform will also utilize block chain to implement a new system of smart contract management. This feature will automate and streamline the contracts managed under distributed rooftop solar that are expected to span across 20 year cycles to ensure the investor is safeguarded and all transactions are implemented in state of the art architecture.
Safaqat.ae is currently live and provides solar rooftop kits leveraging the collective power of crowdfunding and the vision of the Hatta Development Project to retrofit 640 villas with solar. The crowd investment is currently accepting expressions of interests, a statement said.
Meanwhile there has been a proliferation of activity in terms of blockchain energy in recent months.
South African blockchain startup Sun Exchange raised $1.6m in seed funding to launch a peer-to-peer solar energy trading platform.
Prior to that Conjoule announced a blockchain platform designed to support peer-to-peer trading of energy among rooftop PV owners and interested public-sector or corporate buyers. The company was hatched in Innogy’s Innovation Hub in 2015 and pulled in $5.3m in funding from Tokyo Electric Power Company and others in July. Conjoule has been running a pilot in Germany for the past year.
Greeneum, developed by the team behind the first renewable energy currency, SolarCoin (see below), this month revealed it is running test nets and pilots for its peer-to-peer energy trading platform “in Europe, Cyprus, Israel, Africa and the U.S.” It expects to have a viable product platform out by mid-2018.
The much-anticipated Grid+ last month raised $40m through its token sale, which will fund the development and launch of its blockchain-based competitive retail provider in Texas.
Grid Singularity, an Austrian startup has developed a blockchain purpose-built for the energy industry, backed by a team of experienced energy market professionals and leading blockchain and smart contract developers.
In the UK, startup Electron began with a blockchain-based solution to help customers switch energy suppliers, but has since been communicating a vision of leveraging its platform to support broader energy trading and grid-balancing solutions. Last month, with help from Siemens and National Grid, it won UK government support to scale up its platform.
Also in the UK Siemens last year announced a tie-up with New York peer-to-peer blockchain developer LO3 Energy. The promising startup this month pulled in an unspecified amount of funding from Braemar Energy Ventures and Centrica Innovations.
Australia’s star energy blockchain player, Power Ledger, had pulled in more than $24 million from around 15,000 supporters by the time it completed a token generation event earlier this month. The company is rolling out pilot projects for its blockchain platform, built to support a broad range of energy market applications, in Australia and New Zealand.
SolarCoin was launched in 2014 as a rewards program for solar electricity generation, with one of its coins equalling a megawatt-hour of production. The scheme is set to reward 97,500 terawatt-hours of generation over 40 years.
Sun Exchange aims to let supporters around the world crowdfund PV down to the level of an individual solar cell and lease them to schools and businesses in Africa. Sun Exchange recently raised $1.6 million in seed funding.
Finally, Veridium is a financial technology firm aiming to create a new asset class called “EcoSmart Commodities.” The aim is to provide a new vehicle for corporations to embed environmental replacements into the cost of their products.