Shell has agreed to acquire 100 percent of sonnen, a leader in smart energy storage systems and innovative energy services for households. This follows an investment by Shell in May 2018 and means that, post regulatory approval and completion, sonnen will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Shell.
Shell established its New Energies division in 2016. Shell New Energies focuses on two main areas: new fuels for transport, such as advanced biofuels and hydrogen; and power, being involved at almost every stage of the process, from generating electricity, to buying and selling it, to supplying it directly to customers. Shell aims to make electricity a significant part of its business.
“Full ownership of sonnen will allow us to offer more choice to customers seeking reliable, affordable and cleaner energy,” Mark Gainsborough, Executive Vice President New Energies at Shell, said. “Together, we can accelerate the building of a customer-focused energy system in support of Shell’s strategy to offer more and cleaner energy solutions to customers.”
sonnen offers smart energy storage to customers and offers digital energy services via its sonnenCommunity platform. For example, the sonnenBatterie optimizes the use of solar power in a household and supplies energy at night using stored solar power generated in daytime. sonnen has been a pioneer in the energy market by combining its technology with new business models for a decentralized energy system. Recently, sonnen put Germany’s biggest virtual battery into operation. It is based on a network of home electricity storage systems across the country to help balance power supply and demand on the power grid.
Christoph Ostermann, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of sonnen, said: “Shell New Energies is the perfect partner for helping us grow in a market that is expanding rapidly. With this investment we’re excited to help more households to become energy independent and benefit from new opportunities in the energy market. Shell will help drive the growth of sonnen to a new level and help speed up the transformation of the energy system.”
The agreement will accelerate the ability of the two companies to offer innovative integrated energy services and electric vehicle charging solutions, and the provision of grid services that are based on sonnen’s virtual battery pool.
Shell’s New Energies business is seeking to leverage the company’s strengths in fast-growing and commercial parts of the energy industry and could spend on average between $1-2 billion a year until 2020 on commercial opportunities. For more information, go to
— Solar Builder magazine