Canada’s Eguana Technologies has announced the closure of CA$5 million (AU$5.8 million) investment by Itochu Corporation as it readies to begin transitioning its battery supply chain over to its Japanese partner. Previously, Eguana came together with Itochu to integrate Moixa GridShare AI with its Evolve platform for resale by the Japanese conglomerate.
The Gridshare software from the U.K. energy storage company Moixa taps weather data, a residential load profile for each domestic battery and grid price signals to calculate when it should charge from the grid or discharge. Such ‘smart batteries’ translate into a double gain being able to reduce bills for the owners and lessen strain on the grid.
Moixa partnered with Itochu in 2018 to market its GridShare platform in Japan. Since then, the partners have managed to develop what is touted as the largest fleet of batteries under virtual power plant management worldwide. In November, Moixa said they have deployed 10,000 residential storage systems with a cumulative capacity of 100 MWh.
The same software for managing bi-directional batteries will now be integrated into Eguana’s Evolve platform. The battery manufacturer noted that the new product will have a full suite of VPP features supporting fleet aggregation and residential applications. “The Moixa GridShare AI integration and testing with our Eguana Evolve is on schedule to complete later this month and will be available for field trials in April. The new product will open additional third-party ownership (TPO) and fleet aggregation channels through our strategic partnership with Itochu,” said Justin Holland, Eguana CEO.
As part of the arrangement, Itochu will procure for and supply Eguana the required lithium batteries for manufacturing Eguana products. “We will also begin transitioning the battery supply chain over to Itochu which will further reduce up front working capital requirements and bring consistency to our battery module availability as we continue to ramp up operations and clear back logged orders in Hawaii, California, and South Australia,” Holland said.
In South Australia, the Canadian manufacturer was one of the first to join the government’s Home Battery Scheme and pledge to assemble battery systems locally. In less than two weeks after joining the scheme, Eguana reported strong bookings and said its order book has crossed the $1.5 million mark.
Eguana’s fully-integrated residential energy storage system, Evolve, includes the company’s proprietary power electronics system, LG Chem low-voltage battery modules, and a user interface. The system is rated at 5 kW AC output with a modular battery design based on a 6.5 kWh battery, which is scalable from 13 to 39 kWh in storage capacity. The Evolve product comes as a wall-mountable package suitable for indoor and outdoor installations. It is backed by a 10-year standard warranty.