IPO Corner: The Future Of Energy Storage

Over $5 trillion… that’s how much money a Bloomberg New Energy Finance study has found that the energy sector is set to receive in investments by 2030… energy is a big deal. A huge deal, in fact, if we’re going to sustain our continually growing population through the tribulations of global conflict, erratic weather patterns, and ongoing sickness. Current indications point toward an additional 500 million people swelling the global population from 8 billion to 8.5 billion by 2030… as those numbers grow, so too will demand for energy.

Now, this may sound like the opening to an article about energy, but it’s not… we want to look deeper for the opportunities here, we want to look at energy storage. Because what does it matter if we can generate energy if we can’t efficiently store and disburse said energy? And here’s where we’d like to pull the rock up, look underneath, and see what good things we can find hiding just below the surface.

The energy storage systems market is on track to surpass over $435.32 billion by 2030, according to Precedence Research, and was already valued at a whopping $210.92 billion as of last year… you do the math, that’s a crazy rise in just the course of a year… with surging consumption of energy and continual, rapid global industrialization, there’s no way this space is going cold anytime soon.

More Than Batteries

Currently, there are many energy storage options available, and that’s super cool, but what we’re interested in is tomorrow… because, just like population impacts energy demand, it also impacts resource availability. With resources stretched thinner than ever, we like to look toward risk takers in the space trying to solve problems… and one possible solution to dwindling resources may be cow manure.

Before you laugh, think about it… factory farming alone could handle demand for it should there be any… what could be more forward-thinking than turning a nuisance into a resource? And researchers are working on doing just that. In the laboratory, they’ve successfully devised a way to remove heavy metal from cow dung that can then be used to develop electrodes for energy storage devices. While the research is being done to help villages manage cattle and biodegradable waste, we can imagine it’s use on a large scale.

And now, for a throwback… the thermos. Remember those? They used to be a staple of every child and every working man’s lunchbox… before throwaway culture became pervasive and we forgot how to reuse, but the energy storage sector is bringing them back… with a twist, in the form of an energy storage beast called a steel “thermos tower”. And the largest one is in Berlin, where a project to erect the largest heat storage facility in Europe brought this vision to life.

The tower stores heat when it isn’t needed so it can be released when it is… basically acting like a giant, hot soup thermos. It will help heat homes this winter and should help protect citizens and their energy needs, even if ongoing conflicts result in the cutoff of gas supplies to the region. The facility will have a thermal capacity of 200 megawatts and can keep water insulated for up to 13 hours. Plans to build more are already being carried out, and we’re excited to see how things play out.

Deals To Watch

While we wait for these newer systems to incubate, grow, and mature, we’re paying close attention to companies who have already put in their time and are ready to IPO and pump more life into their budding brands, including NeoVolta, Energea, and Dragonfly Energy.

Founded in 2018, California-based NeoVolta (NEOV) is a high-end energy storage systems (ESS) maker primarily serving solar installers and equipment distributors… although, they do have plans to expand to residential and commercial developers. The company has been listed on the OTCQB and will soon list on the Nasdaq, with plans to raise $5 million by offering 1.1 million shares at around $3.50 to $4.50 each.

NeoVolta is a newer company in a newer sector (the ESS market is a fairly new subset of the $17 billion residential solar PV market) and we see growth here as inevitable… as solar installations are projected to grow by 1 million by 2024. As our ongoing energy crisis deepens, we expect to see a continual shift toward ESS, so we’ll be interested to see where NeoVolta can take things.

Energea is a U.S. based renewable energy firm that handles predominantly solar project portfolios in South Africa and the United States…. and rumors are floating around that they’re making some strategic moves toward an IPO. The company sees the Brazilian market as highly attractive for solar and believes that they’re ahead of the pack by about two to three years in figuring that out. They are capitalizing on that.

The company will pump up capacity at its 60 solar power plants in Brazil in the coming days and is exploring expanding operations to the region rather than importing from China. They’ve indicated interest in India as well. While there has not been an official IPO announcement, the moves we’re seeing the company make are turning heads.

Dragonfly Energy Corporation is a manufacturer of deep cycle lithium-ion batteries, which are quickly replacing lead-acid batteries in the energy storage space. The company, headquartered in Reno, Nevada, has announced a plan to go public via a merger with blank check company Chardan NexTech Acquisition 2 Corporation. The deal values Dragonfly at $500 million, and the company will list on the Nasdaq once the transaction is completed.

The company currently supplies mostly solar applications, marine vessels, recreational vehicles, and the like, but has indicated that part of the funds raised will go toward the commercialization of their all-solid-state-battery technology. The company has a lot riding on the battery, and strongly believes that it has the potential to dramatically reduce reliance on the power grid… and let’s be honest, with temperatures beginning to melt railroad tracks and concrete, now is probably the time to be thinking about these things.

Energy needs aren’t going anywhere, and neither is the need to store it. And, as humans must find ways to better utilize the resources we have on a changing earth, new ways of making and storing energy will need to be devised and implemented. These early players are ready to do what it takes to push us into the next phase of our society, and we’re going to keep tabs on them until we find some bright embers of opportunity that stand above the rest… and, hopefully, prove worthy of my Buy List. Keep coming back to find out, and to learn more about what the future of energy will look like.