Sustainability and business resilience are becoming a new standard for measuring how a startup, large company, or an organization is equipped to succeed in a turbulent nowadays economy. “Affordable and clean energy” is one of the Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations and, therefore, at the top of many minds.

We are interviewing the CEO of “Elektrum Lietuva” – Martynas Giga who is also one of the partners in the ROCKIT Impact Accelerator. Elektrum Lietuva are placing the challenge for the startup on the accelerator – “Increasing the usage of solar energy in private households by using solar park infrastructure”.

Dear Martynas, could you please elaborate on the current situation with solar panel usage in Lithuania? Where is Lithuania standing among other European countries?

- Solar panel usage in Lithuania is increasing at a fast pace every year. This growth is driven by two main factors: safe investment opportunity, as the payback is usually 5-7 years, and a renewable energy source that helps every individual to reduce CO2 footprint. In Lithuania we do not have a tradition like in some other European countries to emphasize the necessity to move towards renewable energy; however, we see that it is growing constantly.

Sounds very positive, however, this is a complex ecosystem. Could you share some challenges for Lithuania when it comes to attracting private households to use solar panel parks?

- Solar panel park is a rather new “product” in the market. So firstly we still need to educate people that every individual who is living in an apartment can use solar energy. Moreover, we are continuing to work on product propositions for the customer, so solar energy from solar park becomes more and more accessible to everyone.

It’s of course not easy to educate the society but for sure you can name many great examples from other markets. What solutions do you see in other countries that are making it easier for private households to use solar energy?

In other countries like the USA or Sweden solar sharing platforms are similar to the ones used in Lithuania, but usually, they are not created only for solar. They try to include other types of renewable energy like hydro, wind, or bio. This is why those platforms are versatile. Sharing platforms is a quite new strategy that is available only for a few years now. There is no fluent process that could serve as a benchmark yet, so possibilities are endless.

Talking about ROCKIT Impact Accelerator, could you name 3 startup characteristics that would make the team perfect to solve this challenge?

- Enthusiastic about renewable energy, consumer-oriented, “impossible nothing” attitude (smiles).

At ROCKIT Impact Accelerator we see you as a strong partner. Could you name the strengths you bring to our startups?

- “Elektrum” is a long-time energy expert in Baltics. Being among TOP3 “greenest” energy producers in Europe we believe that it is our mission to drive consumers’ energy consumption towards renewable alternatives. We already have solar parks built and plan to continue expanding this business line, so it would not be some theoretical challenge to approach, but rather a very “hands-on” experience.

Martynas, thank you so much for this insightful conversation – we’re excited to facilitate the shift towards renewables together!

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Alex Gibb

06 Jul 2020

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