Three international start-ups win OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge 2023, to pilot solutions with TotalEnergies
This year’s Challenge shines the spotlight on innovative solutions around renewable energy and sustainable mobility.
Winners of the OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge 2023 with Mr Steve KYAW, Head and Managing Director, Hutchinson Research and Innovation Singapore (first from left); Ms Elodie RENAUD, Managing Director, TotalEnergies Renewables Distributed Generation Asia (fifth from left); Mr Tan Teck Long, Head of Global Wholesale Banking, OCBC (sixth from left); Mr Franck Vitte, Managing Director, TotalEnergies Charging Services Singapore (seventh from left); Her Excellency Ms Minh-di Tang, the Ambassador of France to Singapore (eighth from left); Mr Ting Wee LIANG, Country Chair Singapore and President, TotalEnergies Asia-Pacific & Middle East Marketing & Services (ninth from left) and Mr Mike Ng, Group Chief Sustainability Officer, OCBC (tenth from left)
Singapore, 17 November 2023 – India-based Nunam Technologies, a 2nd hand lithium-ion based technology solutions provider; Spain-based Bia Power, an integrated clean technology start-up; and Philippines-based Pili Seal, a sustainable sealant producer, have emerged as the winners of the second edition of the OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge (“Challenge”). They will be piloting their winning solutions with the subsidiaries of global multi-energy company TotalEnergies in the first half of 2024. Each winner will receive $50,000 pilot funding from OCBC.
First launched in 2022, the OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge aims to co-create innovative sustainable solutions with businesses, while providing aspiring solution providers a platform to showcase and scale their innovations. This year’s Challenge saw close to 90 submissions from 27 countries around the world, responding to the four challenge statements issued by TotalEnergies. The challenge statements were focused on renewable energy and sustainable mobility, as these are critical sectors driving the energy transition and mitigating climate change.
The Winning Solutions
Nunam Technologies started out re-purposing used personal laptop battery cells and has since built on that experience to upcycle EV batteries and extend their lifespan. These re-purposed internet-connected battery systems are scalable, modular, and suitable to be used in a wide range of applications from small scale hybrid solar residential systems to commercial and industrial uninterruptible power supply (UPS) backup needs.
Leveraging data aggregation and forecasting from power generators, fleet operators and EV charge points operators, Bia Power developed a smart charging algorithm that monitors, plans and optimises EV charging loads. It is projected to:
In the Philippines, the sap of the Pili tree commonly undergoes a hydrodistillation process to yield essential oils. A by-product of this process is the spent pili resin, which is usually discarded. Pili Seal developed a patented way to process this spent resin further to yield an industrial grade, 2-in-1 sealant-adhesive – Pili Seal – that has significant health benefits over commercially available chemical-based sealant- adhesives. Pili Seal has been tested in the aviation and building and construction industries. The market for Pili Seal is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of about 6% from now till 2026.
The winners’ quotes are set out in the Annex.
Winners of the OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge will begin piloting their solutions with TotalEnergies in the first half of 2024. They are also being fast-tracked into the final jury phase of TotalEnergies On, taking place in February 2024. TotalEnergies On is the Company’s start-up accelerator program dedicated to electricity businesses at Paris-based STATION F – the largest start-up campus in the world.
Launched in May 2022, the accelerator program aims to identify and provide guidance to promising start-ups to develop innovative solutions in the electricity and renewables business. Winners of TotalEnergies On will have access to an international group of new energy experts as well as a network of over 150 leading venture capital investment funds. These winners will also work closely with various TotalEnergies teams to test and improve their innovative products, services and business models.
One of the finalists, UK-based Seab Power, a developer of a food waste recycling solution which recaptures energy, water and fertilizer, was also given a special mention for its innovative FlexibusterTM technology and business model.
Mr Mike Ng, Group Chief Sustainability Officer, OCBC, said, “One of OCBC’s core strategic priorities is to drive the transition to a low-carbon world. The urgency of this goal has heightened further based on the latest research which says that the window to avoid 1.5°C of global warming will close before 2030 if emissions aren't reduced sufficiently. Initiatives like the Challenge, where we partner like-minded industry stakeholders such as TotalEnergies to support green solution providers and co-develop sustainable innovations, are essential for accelerating our progress on this goal. This year’s winners impressed us with their keen understanding of the gaps in the renewable energies and sustainable mobility market, and the technical soundness and potential commercial viability of their solutions. We are committed to supporting them and more aspiring solution providers to bring their innovations to fruition.”
Mr Ting Wee LIANG, Country Chair Singapore and President, TotalEnergies Asia-Pacific & Middle East - Marketing & Services said, “TotalEnergies has been actively contributing towards Singapore Green Plan 2030. Innovation plays a critical role in accelerating our energy transition progress, with the Company investing over US$1 billion in R&D and innovation, of which 65% is dedicated to decarbonization solutions. As we continue to push forth the frontiers of innovation, partnering like-minded players such as OCBC on this Challenge, enables us to co-create and implement innovative sustainable solutions with start-ups. It also allows TotalEnergies to keep abreast of new technologies that are relevant to our business, thus helping to future proof our existing solutions to better serve customers.”
OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge 2023 winners’ quotes
Winner: Nunam Technologies, India
"India desperately needs more clean energy. We're pleased that OCBC and TotalEnergies acknowledge the importance of second-life battery solutions for decarbonizing electric mobility and renewable energy storage. Collaborations between startups and large companies can accelerate the inclusive energy transition. Nunam's team is thankful for the support and is dedicated to advancing second-life battery reuse in the APAC region. We look forward to working with both the companies to realise this goal".
Co-Founder & CEO of Nunam Technologies
Winner: Bia Power, Spain
"We are thrilled to be part of this program, as it has provided valuable insights into the challenges confronting e-mobility companies in Singapore. Our team is excited about the substantial growth potential of EVs in this market. We also appreciate the opportunity to collaborate with industry leaders to develop innovative solutions that will contribute to the sustainability of the Asian mobility sector."
Head of Product and Co-Founder, Bia Power
Winner: Pili Seal, Philippines
“The OCBC Sustainability Innovation Challenge helped me to share and propagate my perspective that beneficial and sustainable usage can be found from waste materials, such as my Pili Seal invention. I hope we can inspire greater innovation in the global arena, while empowering the livelihoods of our local farming community through new streams of income and opportunity. With the support of OCBC, TotalEnergies and Hutchinson, it is now possible to revolutionize the global aviation sector through green initiatives and sustainable innovation.”
Mark Kennedy E. Bantugon
CEO and Founder, Pili Seal