UK-based residential energy storage firm Moixa has secured a total of £2.5 million ($3.2 million) in new investment towards its goal of creating “a virtual power plant and aggregating the capacity of 100,000 home batteries”.
The lion’s share of the investment, £1.5 million ($1.9 million), has come in equity investment including £500,000 ($649,000) from Japan’s Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) and a further £500,000 ($649,000) from venture capital investment firm First Imagine Ventures.
Lady Barbara Judge, chairman of the Institute of Directors and UK investment firm Athene Capital, is also an investor in the latest round, Moixa said. The company said Lady Judge will sit on its international advisory group “as it starts to consider export markets”.
Meanwhile, a £1 million ($1.3 million) funding facility from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority will allow Moixa to open a regional sales and delivery centre in Manchester that will eventually employ up to 60.
Moixa said it expects to have installed 50,000 UK batteries “and to be managing twice as many using its patented, cloud-based GridShare platform” by 2020.
“This will create a virtual power plant, aggregating around 250MWh of capacity to deliver services to the National Grid and utilities that will help reduce the costs of running the electricity network and allow it to support increased levels of renewables,” Moixa said.
Moixa expects to pilot its battery systems in Tokyo in “a proof of concept trial with Tepco and other Japanese partners later this year”. Moixa also plans to trial the systems in Europe and the US “within the next 12 months”.
Chief executive officer Simon Daniel (pictured, right, with Moixa co-founder and chief technology officer Chris Wright), said: “Smart home batteries are transforming our electricity system, saving money for households and communities and supporting a cost-effective, reliable, low-carbon network.”
To date, Moixa said it has installed its smart batteries in nearly 1,000 homes across the UK with a combined capacity of more than 2MWh and “nine million hours of use”.
Moixa’s smart batteries are 50cm x 30cm x 20cm, wall-mounted lithium-ion phosphate battery units. Moixa said the system requires no additional equipment and is AC-coupled to “take advantage of smart tariffs by importing electricity from the grid when it is cheap”.
The company is also working with Japan’s Hitachi on a £10.8 million ($14 billion) project on the Scilly Isles, off the coast of southwest England, “in developing platforms to enable home batteries and electric vehicles to help balance supply and demand within the islands’ energy system”.