Sunfire Welcomes European Investment Bank and Signs Term Loan Agreement of Up to €100 Million

The electrolyser pioneer Sunfire has secured a term loan of up to €100 million from the European Investment Bank (EIB). This strategic investment will propel the development and industrialisation of its innovative SOEC electrolysers. On June 7, Sunfire CEO Nils Aldag and EIB Vice-President Nicola Beer symbolically signed the agreement at Sunfire’s headquarter in Dresden.

Renewable Hydrogen: A Catalyst for Industrial Transformation

The electrolyser industry offers Europe a unique opportunity to combine its strong industrial history with cutting-edge technology. Renewable hydrogen can act as a key enabler of ecological and economic transformation, playing a crucial role in climate protection, energy security, job creation, and economic growth in Europe. Sunfire’s innovative electrolysers play a crucial role in decarbonising energy intensive industries, thereby cementing Europe’s leadership in the global electrolyser market. With the EIB term loan, the electrolyser pioneer gains additional momentum.

Deploying High-Temperature SOEC Electrolysers

The EIB loan is a double vote of confidence: in Sunfire as a global leader in hydrogen technologies and in the economic region of Eastern Germany and Dresden as a hub for hydrogen expertise. It also shows that Sunfire can successfully access the venture debt market. This type of financing exactly meets the needs of fast-growing, innovative companies like Sunfire. It complements venture capital financings, with longer tenors than traditional venture debt, and without further diluting the founder`s shares.

Sunfire will leverage this capital to accelerate the development and industrialisation of its innovative high-temperature solid oxide electrolysers (SOEC). This includes improvements in stack and module design as well as investments in automation and new production techniques to streamline manufacturing. It will solidify the company’s position as a global leader in this promising and innovative technology.

Sunfire’s SOEC electrolyser is set to be a true game-changer due to its record efficiency of 84%. Indeed, SOEC electrolysers can harness waste heat from steel or ammonia production to supplement the power supply, improving the equipment’s electrical efficiency and drastically cutting operating costs. This not only ensures more efficient renewable hydrogen production but also reduces the demand for renewable electricity, freeing up renewable sources for other decarbonisation needs and alleviating strains on electricity grids.

“Made in Europe” – Turning Vision into Reality

Europe is home to many quality and innovation leaders. Maintaining this leadership role is crucial for future competitiveness. Scaling and implementation will be crucial.

Several cleantech sectors are currently under pressure in Europe due to the large-scale investments being made by other global players like China and the US. European cleantech manufacturers are being forced to turn down orders for lack of bank guarantees. Without a targeted solution, European manufacturers and supply chains will suffer competitively, with non-European competitors seizing the market share and undermining Europe’s industrial base.

Public guarantees – like the EIB venture debt loan – are essential in this early market stage to boost cleantech manufacturing in Europe, strengthen the EU’s global competitiveness, and secure the energy transition. By shifting risk from commercial banks to the EIB’s balance sheet and the European budget, new guarantee lines for cleantech projects can be established.

The EIB`s venture-debt loan to Sunfire thus marks an important milestone in scaling and ramping-up green markets, ensuring that Europe remains globally competitive and at the forefront of industrial innovation.

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