BlueSky Energy

BlueSky Energy

BlueSky Energy
History
BlueSky Energy is a pure-play provider of saltwater-based energy storage systems branded 'GREENROCK'. Founded in Austria in 2012, and now with additional offices in the U.S. and Germany, the company sold roughly 250 systems in 2017.
Technology
BlueSky Energy sold roughly 250 storage systems in 2017 at a price ranging between 850 - 1100 euros ($1051 - $1361) per kWh.
 
IDTechEx was told that the company hopes to take advantage of the expiring Feed-in-Tariffs (FiTs) for residential PV in Germany. By 2021, the FiTs for the oldest PV systems in Germany installed circa 2000 will be expiring (the FiT law guarantees 20 years after the year of installation). The expiring FiTs in Germany are roughly 1GW by 2025, and 32GW by 2033 (cumulative, source: Germany Trade and Invest). On this basis, roughly 50,000 homes by 2025 will be looking to find new ways to generate revenue or savings from their PV systems - one way to so this is by adding an energy storage system.
 
GREENROCK storage systems:
  • The storage systems are scalable from 4kWh to multiple 100kWh depending on the application
  • Extremely safe compared with Li-ion, and non-flammable
  • Lifespan of 15 years for 70 percent usable capacity
  • 100 percent depth of discharge (DoD)
  • C-rate of 0.5C
 
 
Business Model and Market
The business model is direct sales of a turnkey energy storage system GREENROCK, mainly for the residential segment (although the company is also interested in off-grid applications for emerging markets like Africa), and the company does not provide the installation service. The company benefits from a national subsidy (rebate) that covers 30 percent of the capex in Austria when paired with a PV system, and is also selling systems in Germany which has similar local and national subsidies.
Key Metrics
Product metrics
Capacity
C-Rate
Cycle-life
Safety
Expected lifetime
Depth of Discharge
Price
GREENROCK
Modular, 4kWh scalable to multiple 100kWh
0.5C
Maintains 100 percent DoD for 3000 cycles
Roughly 70 percent DoD for 5000 cycles
Extremely safe, non-flammable
15 years to get to 70 percent useable capacity
100 percent
850 - 1100 euros ($1051 - $1361) per kWh
Company Financials
Funding
 
Revenue
210,000 euros ($256,427) - IDTechEx estimate
Size
25 Employees (April 2018)
Main Assets
Knowledge of the system design above the cell level.
Profitability
IDTechEx does not believe the company is profitable.
Competitors
CompetitorComments
Sonnenbatterie
Senec, E3/DC, SMA, LG Chem, VARTA
 
SWOT
Strengths
  • High level of safety and non-flammable
  • Long lifetime (compared to Li-ion)
  • High depth of discharge
  • Power and capacity can be decoupled
  • Non-toxic battery materials
Weaknesses
  • C-rate of 0.5C
  • Low energy density which means a bulky system
Opportunities
  • The expiring FiTs in Germany which increases the size of the addressable market.
Threats
  • Li-ion energy storage providers, which can compete at lower upfront cost
  • Others have struggled competing against Li-ion: sodium ion battery company Aquion filed for bankruptcy in March 2017, having previously raised over $176 million. In July 2017 Aquion was reported to be under new ownership.
IDTechEx Index
Product Value Proposition
6
The main strength of this product is the safety and longevity (15 years, compared with 5 - 10 years for Li-ion), which may be enough to sway consumers. The capex compared to Li-ion is higher, but the opex should be lower due to the long lifetime.
State of Technology/Product Development
8
The product is commercialised, and the company expects to double its output to sales of around 500 systems in 2018.
Medium-Term Commercial Opportunity
6
The company benefits from a subsidy covering 30 percent of the capex in Austria, and other local and national subsidies in Germany. As more FiTs for residential PV owners expire in Germany, the addressable market for the company increases.
IP and Know-How
7
The company has patents and know-how for designs above the cell level. Cells are outsourced.
Competitive Landscape
5
Competition is tough in Germany, the market which is the company's main hope for the future due to the expiring FiTs. The German market is highly fragmented: other pure play companies such as Sonnen, Senec and E3/DC having captured over half the market. Companies like Sonnen, who have a strong software platform behind their product that offers users additional benefits and services, will be difficult to compete with.
Score [0-10]