Antwerp scale-up uses capital increase to roll out partner channel and continue internationalisation.
Antwerp, 17 November 2022 – Antwerp scale-up Hysopt, which offers a unique technology to optimise HVAC system design through its software platform, has completed a capital increase of 5.3 million euro. Junction Growth Investors, SPDG and Rise Proptech Fund injected an amount of 4.5 million altogether. The scale-up will use the funds to continue its internationalisation and expand its partner channel, with parties such as Vattenfall, Veolia and Equans, in order to increase scalability.
Hysopt, a spin-off of the University of Antwerp, was founded in 2013 by CEO Roel Vandenbulcke for the development of ‘physics-based Digital Twin software’. This software is used by project developers, research agencies, installation firms and building facility managers on top of the classic CAD and BIM software to optimise the design of HVAC systems before the actual construction or renovation. Algorithms simulate the performance of a building’s entire system in a virtual environment and can predict parameters such as energy costs, CO2 emissions and thermal comfort. The software subsequently compares systems such as heat pumps, gas boilers, cogeneration systems, underground thermalenergy storage or solar panels to determine the best possible solution. This could not be done previously, resulting in suboptimal choices and performance. It also offers suggestions on how to control the system, settings for all system components and their hydraulic composition. This enables maximum savings.
Accelerated energy transition
After an internal funding round in 2020, Hysopt has now raised another 5.3 million euro. Junction Growth Investors, SPDG and Rise Proptech Fund are jointly investing 4.5 million euro , supplemented by existing shareholders such as Qbic. Junction Growth Investors’ contribution is the largest at 2.5 million euro. It is the second investment for this new private equity fund, which focuses primarily on growth companies with the potential to accelerate the energy transition. Hysopt and its unique technology offer this potential, as well as boasting a strong executive board chaired by Serge van Herck, tech entrepreneur and current CEO of the listed company EVS Broadcast Equipment.
Pieter-Jan Mermans, a Junction partner and former founder of energy technology firm REstore: “Junction is familiar with the energy sector’s complexities and knows what is needed to grow internationally in the energy transition sector. We want to use this experience to help promising companies scale up faster. Hysopt offers a proven technology. The software has already been used to optimise over 450 large HVAC systems, achieving average energy cost savings of 30% and reducing CO2 emissions by 40%. Keeping in mind that 40% of European energy usage is attributable to buildings, this technology’s potential impact is enormous. Which is why Junction is driven to help Hysopt grow and progress even faster in contributing to a sustainable energy transition.”
Vandenbulcke also identifies two important market trends that make Hysopt’s technology more relevant and valuable than ever. “While people did not worry about their energy bill or CO2 emissions five years ago, many companies and building owners have now adopted a different mindset due to the explosive rise in energy prices and Green Deal legislation that requires owners to make buildings more sustainable. Our software addresses both these aspects as well as the increasing digitisation of architecture, engineering and construction. Because of current energy prices, modifications proposed by our software often take less than a year to pay off.”
Initially, Hysopt will use the capital to continue expanding its partner channel of research agencies, installation firms and building facility managers.
“Energy performance contracts are on the rise and due to the emergence of performance-driven contracting, these parties bear even more responsibility for their systems’ performance. They need software to be able to predict this performance and thereby prevent risks. The partner channel we set up barely a year ago now has 14 partners, including well-known players such as Sweco, Veolia, Equans, Vital Energi, Vattenfall and Pinnacle Power. These make independent use of our software in all their projects, contributing greatly to Hysopt’s turnover. By accelerating the roll-out of this channel and adding ‘partner sales managers’ and ‘partner success managers’, we aim to continue expanding our scalability in the short term.”
Hysopt has grown into a company with thirty employees since its incorporation. Hysopt currently has a strong presence in the healthcare sector (hospitals and retirement and care homes), educational institutions (universities and universities of applied sciences), government buildings and heat networks. The technology is in increasing use for commercial buildings and offices as well. The scale-up has its registered offices in Antwerp and, besides in Belgium, also operates in the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the United Kingdom. Hysopt now has the ambition to continue its internationalisation, starting with the German market, where it will set up a local sales team. Hysopt also aims to double its R&D team in 2023 and hopes to increase its entire team to sixty next year.
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