Shell StartUp Engine UK 2021

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Shell StartUp Engine UK

WHAT IS SHELL STARTUP ENGINE UK? Shell StartUp Engine UK is an acceleration programme for energy start-ups delivered in partnership with Unreasonable Group. Aimed at accelerating the UK energy transition, it sits within Shell UK’s portfolio of programmes contributing to society and sponsored by Sinead Lynch, UK Country Chair and Roger Hunter, VP e-Mobility. The new UK programme is part of our larger global energy accelerator Shell StartUp Engine. It builds on Shell UK’s 38-year experience of supporting entrepreneurs, as well as Unreasonable’s experience and expertise in curating start-up ecosystems. The programme is in line with Shell’s own ambition to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050 or sooner, in step with society. Our business plans need to change to make this happen. By helping businesses in the low-carbon sector, both the UK and Shell stand to benefit from stronger economic growth and a deeper pool of innovators able to accelerate a fair and just energy transition, improve access to energy and help consumers make smarter energy choices. By helping businesses in the low-carbon sector, both the UK and Shell stand to benefit from stronger economic growth and a deeper pool of innovators able to accelerate a fair and just energy transition, improve access to energy and help consumers make smarter energy choices.

WHAT DOES THE PROGRAMME OFFER? The programme is designed to meet the needs of entrepreneurs helping to accelerate the UK energy transition. By taking part in the programme, entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to:

Connect to revenue and investment opportunities

Shell StartUp Engine UK

Receive support to tackle strategic, operations, product, and sales challenges

Join a strong community of entrepreneurs, business leaders and experts

Expose their business and impact to investors, energy and innovation experts

Enhance leadership and team capabilities






AirEx Technologies

Alp Technologies

Bramble Energy

Connected Energy Technologies





Mandulis Energy


Riversimple Movement


09 Ventive

Shell StartUp Engine UK


Agnes is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of AirEx, an IoT-enabled smart home solution that helps reduce heat demand in homes, whilst managing indoor air quality. Prior to founding AirEx, Agnes was a Lead Assessor at Sustainable Ventures, a cleantech incubator, where she led the delivery of 30,000 Fuel Poverty Assessments. During her time at Sustainable Ventures, Agnes led numerous low-carbon innovation projects. She is a certified Passivhaus consultant, with nine years of building physics expertise. Agnes holds a Masters in Interdisciplinary Design for the Built Environment (IDBE) from the University of Cambridge, and is an Innovate UK “Women in Innovation 2019” Award winner, as well as a ‘Royal Academy of Engineering SME Leaders 2020’ Award winner.


Building & Construction Technology Bridging the analog and digital divide for smart ventilation control.



AirEx provides extremely low-cost solutions for reducing fabric heat loss, improving thermal comfort, and protecting residents’ health by passive airflow control. Tens of millions of homes across Europe were built with low energy standards. Residents struggle with cold, uncomfortable draughts and high energy bills, and the complete lack of airflow can cause damp or condensation problems. AirEx replaces traditional air bricks, which


Agnes Czako Co-Founder & Managing Director

causes significant fabric heat loss. AirEx’s Smart Ventilation Control (SVC) measures the environmental conditions (such as temperature, humidity, air quality) and its cloud-based algorithms automatically regulate airflow, leading to 12-16% reduction in an entire house’s heat loss, resulting in 2-3 years payback. Shell StartUp Engine UK


James began his career on Wall Street, breaking away to join the startup world as a CFO at Agnion, a Germany-based renewable energy engineering company with a presence in Africa. This is where he saw first-hand the infrastructure challenges that the countries were facing, and decided to start his own start-up to provide decentralised solutions. He founded Alp Technologies in 2015, choosing to focus on the mission of providing clean energy to lower income countries. He has since obtained a series of innovation project awards in the UK and EU, winning his 17th round of funding in 2020.


Access to Clean Energy Combining modular design with renewable energy production intended for the masses.



Alp Technologies is a renewable energy engineering start-up, developing renewable energy technologies for low-income countries and clients, like Mercedes, NASA, and Airbus. Since 2015, Alp has funded a variety of R&D projects, including advanced battery storage systems, A.I. in predictive maintenance, waste-to-energy generation and power electronics and control systems. They aim to leapfrog fossil-fuel based energy infrastructure in developing nations, using renewable energy based on local, circular economy principles. Derived from an independent modular working unit concept, Alp Technologies allows for the manufacturing of industrial-


James Kong Founder & Director

specialised units at a decent cost. Currently, they’re working on the world’s lowest cost modular battery system for off-grid, stationary energy storage. Alp also develops IoT-based cyclones, which remove particulates from an air, gas, or liquid stream, without the use of filters. Alp Technologies provides their customers with affordable energy products. Shell StartUp Engine UK


Vidal joined Bramble Energy as Chief Operating Officer in 2017, overseeing the product team at Bramble Energy and enabling all things PCBFC™, from component procurement to system production. An engineer with a background in hybridised system design and integration, he brings his experience in project and supply chain management from the construction industry, which provides a unique perspective to the day-to-day operations of Bramble Energy. He has been involved in two successful fundraisers at Bramble Energy, and its transition from university premises, to Bramble Energy’s own hydrogen-safe facility. He has also led the recruitment process at Bramble Energy, building out both the core technical and supporting staff from 3 to almost 20.


Alternative fuels (hydrogen) Powering the net zero future with printed circuit board hydrogen fuel cells.


Crawley, England

Bramble Energy exists to solve perhaps the greatest barriers to the adoption of fuel cells: manufacturing complexity and scale-up, as well as maintaining costs. The only fuel cell company with the manufacturing capacity to supply gigawatts of fuel cell hardware, Bramble Energy has developed the unique, printed circuit board (PCB) fuel cell - the PCBFC™. The PCBFC utilises costeffective production methods and materials to reduce the cost and complexity of manufacturing proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). Bramble


Vidal Bharath COO

Energy’s novel fuel cell construction allows for the creation of bespoke, adaptable form factor, low-cost hydrogen fuel cells that can be used for a range of applications of varying power outputs, from portable power units to motive applications. Bramble Energy seeks to make widespread hydrogen fuel cell use a reality, fueling a more sustainable society. Shell StartUp Engine UK


Connected Energy’s smart-metering tech for biogas and solar PV brings

Vijay has worked in renewable energy since 2010, initially in Scotland from where he hails. In recent years, his focus has turned toward integrated local energy systems and how to utilise ICTs in energy provision. Since 2014, Vijay has thrown himself at the energy access challenge, first spearheading Urjaa Samadhan an Indian-based social enterprise working with off-grid solar equipment users in India (now part of Connected Energy). Seeing how local companies are disadvantaged in the energy access market, he conceptualised and drove the development of Cloud Solar, one of Connected Energy’s first products. Beyond day-to-day business, Vijay likes to research, write and get stuck into data. He has contributed to various research projects and publications, including the Poor People’s Energy Outlook, and has also cofounded two other businesses, Scene and Farm-Hand.


Internet of Things Increasing transparency and efficiency in delivering affordable renewable energy to those living off-grid.



new opportunities for off-grid energy businesses. Their products enable micro utilities and distributors to monitor and control solar and biogas energy systems remotely, increasing quality of service, and enabling pay-as-you-go for electricity and clean cooking. Smart Biogas is a market leading biogas metering solution. It uses machine learning to predict and notify digester breakdowns, allows real time monitoring of biogas


Vijay Bhopal Co-Founder & Managing Director

digesters, easy integration with carbon markets and enables pay-as-yougo biogas. Cloud Solar is a system-agnostic smart solar charge controller, for solar home systems, and DC productive uses. It allows solar companies to develop customised solar packages which can be remotely monitored, controlled, and paid for incrementally through pay-as-you-go. Shell StartUp Engine UK


Mandulis Energy develops renewable energy infrastructure to deliver affordable, reliable, and sustainable low carbon energy capable of driving

Peter is the co-founder of Mandulis Energy, a cleantech start-up and social enterprise focused on developing and deploying new technologies and approaches to deliver energy that is affordable, reliable, sustainable, and capable of driving economic development, in urban, rural and refugee communities. Prior to this, Peter set up and managed a number of businesses in Africa, and has worked in agriculture, education, climate finance, transport, and logistics. He has an MEng in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Bristol. Outside the work environment, Peter is a Ballroom Dancer and Thespian, speaks Acholi, Arabic, and French, and enjoys cooking and nature.


Energy Technology Infrastructure Developing sustainable energy infrastructure in lowincome​ countries.


London & Kampala, Uganda

economic development in urban and rural communities. Headquartered in both the UK and Uganda, its approach to energy access enables food security, poverty alleviation, local economic growth, and climate resilience. Mandulis is leading the development of “Earth Energy,” Africa’s largest grid-tied biomass gasification power plant, as well as “REPARLE,” using offgrid renewable energy to power agriculture and enhance the livelihoods of thousands of rural and refugee farmers. Mandulis has been funded by the Innovate UK Energy Catalyst for their development of a novel solar biomass hybrid solution and is backed by AfDB, EEP-Africa, FCDO, Grand Challenges Canada, Innovation Norway, Netherlands BZ, UECCC, UNCDF and USAID, among others. In 2020, Mandulis Energy received


Peter Nyeko Co-Founder & Managing Director

an endorsement from then-Permanent Secretary at the Department for International Development, Matthew Rycroft: “632 million people in SubSaharan Africa live without electricity. British company Mandulis Energy is giving thousands more people access to clean, renewable energy sources helping transform lives.” Shell StartUp Engine UK


Ben Turner leads the team at Origen, a business developing technologies to decarbonise heavy industry, and remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. With a background in earth sciences and 10 years in investment banking, Ben joined Origen in 2019 as CEO, having recognised the immediate commercial application of the concept. This role has seen Ben draw on his broad range of skills to bring together a team that has taken the technology to the point of commercialisation. Ben is passionate about climate entrepreneurship, and strongly believes that profit and sustainability are not mutually exclusive outcomes. He is unwavering in his desire to take Origen’s removal technology to scale, and ensure a stable climate for all generations to come.


CO2 Harvesting & Storage Leveraging the power of the lime cycle to remove CO2 in a cost-effective and scalable way


Walsall, England

Origen recognises that simply reducing carbon dioxide emissions will not be enough to avoid climate change. That is why they are developing technologies to remove carbon dioxide from the air. Origen leverages the power of the lime cycle to remove carbon dioxide in a cost-effective and scalable way. Their first commercially applicable technology enables the manufacture of carbonneutral lime, and is being built at pilot scale in partnership with a leading lime


Ben Turner CEO

manufacturer. This will provide the global lime industry with a route to avoiding over 400 million tonnes of carbon emissions each year. The technology is being further developed to enable the drawdown of atmospheric carbon dioxide and it is anticipated that within three to five years, their technology will result in a fully-looped carbon dioxide removal solution. Shell StartUp Engine UK


Fiona has been at Riversimple since its inception, and is responsible for brand communications, as well as overseeing the development of the company’s customer service. Being no stranger to challenging conventional wisdom, before joining Riversimple in 2014, Fiona spent 19 years at global advertising and communications agency, TBWA Worldwide, as their Head of Strategic Planning Worldwide. Her main focus was on leading and developing Disruption, the company’s strategic approach to communication, working for major clients across the world on articulating their vision and aligning their teams and priorities behind it.


Energy Technology Transportation Manufacturing hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles in order to provide a zero-emission personal transport solution.


Llandrindod Wells, Wales

Riversimple is a sustainable car company working to eliminate, systematically, the environmental impact of personal transport. Riversimple’s first vehicle, the Rasa, is an electric car powered by hydrogen. With the world moving to replace petrol and diesel cars within the next 10-20 years, hydrogen fuel cell cars have an important role to play, alongside battery electric vehicles. The Rasa has a decent range, is quick to refuel, emits nothing but pure


Fiona Spowers Director

water vapour and is designed to maximise efficiency, while minimising the particulates from tyres and brakes. Rather than selling vehicles, Riversimple will be offering them as part of an all-inclusive, cost-transparent subscription service. Its business model makes efficiency profitable without asking the customer to pay a premium for it. Market trials will soon be underway. Shell StartUp Engine UK


Scene empowers local community ownership of energy systems across the UK through consultancy, research, and development of ICT products. Scene’s expertise spans from feasibility appraisal, installation, and operation across various renewable energy technologies. Deploying a product development business model, Scene takes innovative product ideas through the development life-cycle, before commercialising them as new companies and scaling their impact. Cloud Solar and Smart Biogas, two products developed by Scene, provide last mile ICT for accelerated energy access in Africa and India. Scene is currently working on two

Alex heads up Scene’s work as Director in community energy and local energy systems. A Social Enterprise focused on growing the community energy sector and other community-based climate change adoption initiatives through provision of high-quality research and consulting services, Scene aims to help to facilitate the spread of communityand locally-owned renewable energy across the globe, and to deliver change with benefits at the local level. In his role, Alex coordinates the delivery of consultancy services, working on behalf of communities and landowners to develop collaborative projects, and working with developers, agencies, and NGOs interested in exploring community engagement options. With a background in landscape architecture and town planning, he has a deep understanding of the development process across energy and built environment, having delivered over 100MW of operational renewables across a range of technologies.


Access to Clean Energy Democratizing the lowcarbon energy transition through decentralized energy markets and shared-ownership.




Alex Schlicke Co-Director

key innovation projects, ZUoS and EMBLEM. ZUoS is an energy services platform for UK energy suppliers and virtual power plant operators, optimising local distribution grids; and EMBLEM offers a new model of electricity provision in Africa and India through modular mini-grids and the creation of peer-to-peer energy markets. Shell StartUp Engine UK


Rob is Managing Director of Ventive taking the company into its next phase of growth, and positions it as the leader in intelligent building services. After spending his formative years on the first online trading platform for utility contracts, Rob moved into real estate. Designing and managing deep energy retrofits and new build projects allowed him to explore renewable technology options, leveraging his experience of traditional construction methods, as well as integrating more efficient technologies. He created one of the first large-scale rooftop renewables programmes in the UK, engaging multi-property landlords and using his understanding of carbon offset financing. Driven by an environmental agenda, sustainability sits at the heart of all Rob’s projects.


Building & Construction Technology Pioneering naturally intelligent ventilation solutions to increase efficiency and decrease energy usage in the built environment.



Ventive’s vision is to become the energy platform of modern buildings: Integrating connected, data-enabled building services that create comfortable and healthy internal environments. The company has developed a range of sophisticated ventilation and building services solutions to reduce the reliance on costly, energy-hungry mechanical systems. Their patented technique of Passive Ventilation with Heat Recovery (PVHR) delivers 100% fresh air, while reducing heat loss by up to 72%. It does this by recovering heat from stale exhaust air to prewarm incoming air or by


Rob Morrison CEO

distributing it via its heat pump technology into thermal energy elsewhere. All Ventive systems are cloud-connected to enable remote commissioning, real-time performance monitoring, system optimization, and proactive maintenance, with proof of concepts to address the energy balance (including load shifting and grid balancing service offerings). Shell StartUp Engine UK

SHELL’S WIDER INNOVATION ECOSYSTEM Shell has long been an innovator and encourages innovation through a variety of initiatives and investments. Over four decades, Shell has developed six collaborative programmes. These combine the entrepreneurial spirit of reaching out, working differently and moving faster, with the drive for innovation: learning from each other, adapting existing technologies and creating new ones. The programmes fall into two categories: those with a social focus, including Shell StartUp Engine, and those with a business focus.



These programmes promote entrepreneurship and innovation, both inside and outside Shell. These teams invest their time, knowledge, experience and through Shell, they offer access to wider networks.

These programmes seek to foster innovation that can then be applied within Shell. These are technologies that aim to advance energy production, reduce emissions and increase safety. Together, the social and business programmes foster innovation, develop different ways of working and create opportunity for individuals who make a difference.

Shell Startup Engine is a global innovation programme for energy startups looking to develop their capabilities and power business growth within the smart energy landscape.

Shell Ventures makes minority investments in companies with new technologies and disruptive business models that accelerate the power and mobility transformation.

Shell GameChanger works with start-ups on unproven early-stage ideas with the potential to impact the future of energy.

Shell LiveWIRE started in 1982 and operates in 19 countries to help local entrepreneurs turn their ideas into reality with a focus on sustainability and economic diversification.

Shell Research Alliance is a global network of research partnerships and collaborations aligned by a similar goal to develop the technology of our near, medium and long-term energy futures.

Shell TechWorks is a hub of technical experts leveraging decision science to drive disruptive innovation and make technology work for Shell.

Learn more at

Shell StartUp Engine UK

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