iX Challenge: Innovative approaches to data-driven asset management solutions

EQUANS is searching for innovators who are developing data-driven asset management solutions that can help digitise and decarbonise energy-consuming assets within buildings and industry, accelerating the zero carbon transition. Through the Clean Growth Innovation Fund, EQUANS is looking to make strategic investments in cleantech start-ups and SMEs.

Funding Details
When

Registration Opens

01/08/2022

Registration Closes

09/09/2022

Award

Companies can apply for £100,000 to £1,000,000 in funding, with 50% of the funding coming from EQUANS as an equity investment, and 50% of the funding coming from a non-dilutive grant from Innovate UK.

Organisation

Innovate UK

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Background

In the UK & Ireland, EQUANS provides facilities management, energy efficiency and regeneration, together with a wide range of technical services.  The scope also includes specialist energy-related capabilities: smart buildings, green mobility, district & embedded energy and decentralised renewables.

EQUANS has partnered with Innovate UK to establish the Clean Growth Innovation Fund; an investment partnership bringing equity and grants to support UK-based start-ups and SMEs that are delivering on the UK’s Clean Growth agenda.

Challenge

Buildings are a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the UK, accounting for 30% of the total gas emitted. In large commercial and industrial buildings (with floor area over 1,000m2), up to 80% of operational CO2 emissions arises from energy use associated with heating, cooling and dispatchable energy. It is therefore evident that decarbonising the energy consuming assets within buildings and industry e.g. boilers, pumps, fans, compressors, lighting, standby generators etc, through optimised management and control, remains critical to ensure the UK achieves its Net Zero target.

As part of this KTN Innovation Exchange (iX) challenge, EQUANS is looking for companies with data-driven asset management solutions that can help tackle this challenge and are interested in securing investment through the Clean Growth Innovation Fund.

What does EQUANS mean by data-driven asset management solutions?

Across the UK, EQUANS manages a vast number of buildings and associated assets across its clients’ sites. These include a range of building services systems, such as, lighting, heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), emergency power, building controls, fire safety and a range of industrial systems.

As a leader in delivering technical facilities management, EQUANS is looking to supplement its existing in-house capabilities to lead the transformation of asset management through automation, digitisation and decarbonisation. To do so, EQUANS is searching for innovative solutions that enable:

  • The development, delivery and monitoring of data-driven asset lifecycle replacement and decarbonisation programmesReference example: EQUANS has a client with an ageing portfolio of assets and an incomplete asset database. Do you have a product/service/solution that EQUANS could use to identify critical data gaps, simulate site-specific asset replacement opportunities and present recommendations for projects that will enable the reduction of carbon emissions, energy consumption and maintenance costs?
  • Enhanced operational efficiency through predictive, proactive, and smarter maintenanceReference example: EQUANS is seeking solutions to increase the intelligence of the assets that it manages. By alerting EQUANS to predictable / imminent issues or by remotely diagnosing problems, EQUANS hopes to improve its first-time fix percentage and reduce the carbon impact of sending engineers on multiple site visits. Is your product/service/solution able to demonstrably improve the operational efficiency of facilities and asset management?

Process: In order to be considered, companies are asked to submit a pitch deck and to complete a short Expression of Interest questionnaire. As part of your pitch deck, please explain how much funding you require and the activities for which the funding will be used (the ‘project’). Please see the ‘Technical Requirements’ below for the eligibility requirements for the project.

Applications will be assessed on a rolling basis up to the deadline. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to pitch their solutions to EQUANS.

Eligibility

To be eligible for the Clean Growth Innovation Fund you must define a project that you wish to be funded, which aligns with the data-driven asset management solutions challenge.

This project must cost between £100,000 and £1,000,000:

  • 50% of the funding for successful companies will come from EQUANS as equity investment and 50% of the funding will come from an Innovate UK grant.

Example: A company is valued at £2,500,000 and requires £500,000 for its project:

  • £250,000 will come from EQUANS as equity investment (10% shareholding)
  • £250,000 will come from Innovate UK as a non-dilutive grant

The business applying for the competition is required to be aligned with the priorities and challenges set out in this Statement.  You should also explain in your pitch deck how you believe a strategic partnership between your company and EQUANS might be beneficial for both the company and EQUANS.

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