Sunfire GmbH, a provider of liquid fuels and combustibles recently raised € 25 million venture capital in a series C financing round.
The German company also got a technology company Paul Wurth S.A. joined as the new lead investor. Notably, the company is part of the SMS group, the worldwide leading provider of equipment and plants for the metals industry. The existing Sunfire investors – INVEN Capital, Idinvest Partners, Total Energy Ventures and Sunfire Entrepreneurs Club also participated in the new financing round.
According to Sunfire, the company will be using this fresh capital for commercial multi-megawatt projects applying high-temperature electrolysis and Power-to-Liquid technology.
On the other hand, this collaboration is a significant step for the Luxembourg-based technology company Paul Wurth in view of new technological developments leading to green steelmaking as well as an opportunity to enter the growing e-Fuels market.
Founded in 2010 by Carl Berninghausen, Christian Olshausen, and Nils Aldag, Sunfire GmbH develops and produces high-temperature electrolysers (SOEC) and high-temperature fuel cells (SOFC). The company employs 130 people.
Climate-neutral fuels and gases
The technologies developed by Sunfire allow producing climate-neutral fuels and gases for sectors, which today can hardly do without fossil energy sources, such as heavy load transportation, aviation, steel industry or chemical industry. Green hydrogen is produced based on green electricity in an efficient high-temperature electrolyser, using waste heat generated for example by industrial processes.
In the latest product version, high-temperature electrolysis can not only reactivate water but also CO2 and thus transform, in the most direct way, combustion off-gases into clean feedstock, replacing fossil oil or natural gas. In refineries, it can be further processed into e-gasoline, e-diesel and especially e-kerosene for aviation.
Carl Berninghausen, CEO of Sunfire, said:
Thanks to our so far largest financing round we pave the way for the industrialisation of our technology validated in pilot plants. For example, Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH is counting on green hydrogen in a successful pilot project. Therewith we have already set a signal in the steel sector.
With Paul Wurth joining the venture, we become a valuable partner for energy intensive industries. This milestone means for us an important step towards an industrial company, and we will now be able to expand our pure product business to service activities also in the field of projects.
Georges Rassel, CEO of Paul Wurth, said:
Our collaboration with Sunfire clearly expresses our strategy to play a leading role in the upcoming transformation of the steel industry towards CO2-free steel production. Paul Wurth designs and supplies complete blast furnace plants, coke oven plants as well as by-product treatment facilities for the primary stage of integrated steelmaking. We would like to accompany our customers also in their journey to hydrogen-based hot metal production and support them to achieve climate protection targets.
Stay tuned to Silicon Canals for more updates in the tech startup world.