Germany-based Sunfire gets €100 million in European Investment Bank EIB support for green hydrogen




Germany-based Sunfire gets €100 million in European Investment Bank EIB support for green hydrogen.


The European Investment Bank (EIB) is teaming up with private investors to support the development of innovative electrolysis technologies needed for Europe`s green transition. With the Germany-based Sunfire, the EU-Bank has signed a first agreement worth up to €100 million to advance Sunfire`s solid oxide electrolysers towards serial production.


The EIB`s investment is supported by the InvestEU programme, which aims to trigger more than €372 billion in additional investment across Europe until 2027, including in new technologies. In addition, Sunfire secured additional €215million in a Series E equity financing round.


The agreement will support Sunfire develop electrolysers to produce green hydrogen more energy- and cost-effectively for industry processes, replacing the use of fossil fuels in high energy consuming sectors like chemicals and steel. Likely clients would include fertilizer/ammonia or methanol producers, energy majors and steel mills that are seeking to decarbonize their production.


Sunfire, founded in 2010 and based in Dresden, offers a combination of two complementary and differentiated technology platforms. Sunfire`s pressurized alkaline electrolysers are already installed on an industrial scale today. It`s innovative high-temperature solid oxide electrolysers (SOEC) will be a sought-after option in many applications in the future, because of their higher efficiency.


In the further development of solid oxide electrolysers, Sunfire will seek improvements in stack and module design, implementing new materials and optimizing design, as well as automation and new production techniques, to simplify the production-process.


Iliana Ivanova, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth said:


This investment embodies our commitment to fostering groundbreaking technologies that are pivotal for the green and digital transition.


“By leveraging both public and private funding, we are reinforcing the EU’s position as a global leader in sustainable innovation, ensuring that our industries remain competitive while moving towards a carbon-neutral economy. Together, we are turning ambitious visions for a greener, more resilient Europe into tangible realities.”


Nicola Beer, EIB-Vice President, responsible for EIB-financing in Germany, said:


To make the green transition work for energy intensive industries, the development of a green hydrogen business environment is crucial.


“Scalable, reliable and efficient electrolysers are a cornerstone. Therefore, we at the EIB are happy to support Sunfire`s innovative technology.”


The EIB loan comes in the form of equity-type venture debt, with a guarantee under the InvestEU’s Green Transition window that supports the achievement of the EU’s policy objective of decarbonizing the industry. The EIB venture debt loan is a form of finance that meets the needs of fast-growing, innovative companies. These loans complement venture capital financing, with longer tenors than traditional venture debt, and without further diluting the founder`s shares. 


Nils Aldag, Sunfire founder and CEO, said:


The EU is rightly determined to future-proof its industry.


“This requires a two-pronged approach which helps energy-intensive industries decarbonize and improve the productivity and resilience of its operations, while supporting industrial clean-tech players like Sunfire to be competitive on the global stage. The EIB credit demonstrates that Sunfire can also successfully access the venture debt market. Alongside continued and growing investor backing, it is giving us the confidence to scale the production of the next generation of electrolysers. Investments like this help move ‘Made in Europe’ from an ambition to a reality, and I am delighted about this vote of confidence in our business.”


Background information


The InvestEU programme provides the European Union with crucial long-term funding by leveraging substantial private and public funds in support of a sustainable recovery. It also helps mobilise private investments for the European Union’s policy priorities, such as the European Green Deal and the digital transition. The InvestEU programme brings together under one roof the multitude of EU financial instruments currently available to support investment in the European Union, making funding for investment projects in Europe simpler, more efficient and more flexible. The programme consists of three components: the InvestEU Fund, the InvestEU Advisory Hub and the InvestEU Portal. The InvestEU Fund is implemented through financial partners that will invest in projects using the EU budget guarantee of €26.2 billion. The entire budget guarantee will back the investment projects of the implementing partners, increase their risk-bearing capacity and thus mobilise at least €372 billion in additional investment.



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