SolarGaps, a Ukrainian startup which has designed “the world’s first renewable energy-producing window blinds using solar panels to create electricity for your apartment, home or office,” has received a €1 million grant from the EU’s Horizon 2020 SME Instrument program.
The news was reported last week by Ukrainian tech blog AIN.UA, which cited exchanges with the company.
The startup had to meet three key requirements, said SolarGaps’s co-founder Evgeniy Erik: “First, that the product be developed to the ‘pre-mass market condition;’ second, that EU certification be obtained; third, that our solution be applicable in practice.”
The funds will help the company fine tune its B2B product and prepare it for release. A B2C version, which has already been certified, is closer to the commercialization phase.
In 2017, SolarGaps received an initial €50,000 grant from the European Commission in Phase 1 of Horizon 2020 SME Instrument; then another €50,000 under the Climate Innovation Vouchers Programme.
The startup also attracted some $150,000 through two crowdfunding campaigns in 2017, and $120,000 from equity investors in 2016.