In today’s competitive world it is not enough for startups and young companies to boast great technology, great people or great business concepts–you need market credibility. And what better way to achieve this than by partnering with the best and brightest companies out there?
When EnergyNest embarked on its journey six years ago, it was clear that the company needed to side with the right partners, and choosing the correct partners would be key for realizing our ambitions. We sought to increase our reputation, reduce time to market, and access new markets. EnergyNest has been successful in partnering with world-renowned R&D and academic institutions, but partnering with prominent actors in the market space is another challenge altogether.
Here is our 7-step recipe:
- Identify the gap. What constitutes a total solution for the market? How do we best mobilize our limited but powerful resources and core competencies? Bridging the gaps requires understanding synergies and designing a partnership road-map with the best.
- Shape the selection criteria for our partners. What do we want from our partners? They need to bring real strategic value. We also want “good friends”: companies that we can trust to solve complex issues, and not least, companies that our customers can trust.
- Pinpoint and prioritize partner candidates. From the gaps that we have identified, we carry out a comprehensive screening of market players, and find the companies who possess our missing capabilities and provide complementary expertise.
- Prepare the partnership proposition. We like to approach our partners in the same way we do with our customers–there is only one chance to make a good first impression. We discover ways we can tune our value to the partner in order to create a common value proposition.
- Perform due diligence. Finding the right organizational entry-point, using our contacts to get an introduction, pitching and sharing, and talking so that we fully understand how we can combine efforts and capabilities to our common offering.
- Write down the rules of the game. Once we know what we want to do together, we can write it down and enjoy bringing something good to the world. We prepare the contract establishing the rules of our collaboration.
- Let’s do this!
From the get-go EnergyNest had ambitions of obtaining the right high-performing partners – and we managed to employ our strategy very well.
- Our technology relies on a unique high-performance material for storing thermal energy called HEATCRETE®. This material is key for our technology, and required an exclusive partner possessing global manufacturing and delivery capabilities, sophisticated technical know-how, and an interest in pushing the boundaries of its own industry. The material was thus developed together with HeidelbergCement, currently the highest-ranking player in the world in aggregates, second-highest in cement production, and third in ready-mixed concrete.
- EnergyNest knows its engineering, but occasionally it is better to leave some tasks to other specialists. We decided to partner with TSK Energy Solutions, a major EPC company in Spain, with worldwide references and project experience, to help us execute certain engineering and project tasks that demand the capabilities of vertically integrated entities.
- We want to offer the highest quality solution to our customers, no matter where the project takes place. We therefore partnered with DNV GL, a world leading certification body renowned for employing some of the most rigorous requirements for certifications and compliance to standards. Moreover, DNV GL is a global knowledge house, helping EnergyNest secure everything from design and technical work to quality procedures with our suppliers.
- For steam-based storage solutions, we partnered with renowned Aalborg CSP, with whom we jointly developed a cost-competitive thermal energy storage (TES) system. This cooperation has aligned world-class expertise from both companies to design and deliver a direct-steam-to/from-concrete storage system enabling predictable and on-demand power generation with low operation and maintenance expenses.
EnergyNest has already demonstrated its capability to forge strong partnerships and creating an ecosystem for delivering projects throughout the world. These partnerships are what allows the company to deliver systems of the highest quality on its first ongoing commercial developments.