The Finnish energy company Voltan Energy produces heating and cooling for properties with ground source heat systems, located close to its customers. The company designs, builds and finances heating sites. Customers pay for heating according to consumption, as with traditional district heating. Voltan has already signed cooperation agreements with several construction companies.
Voltan Energy (Voltan Lähienergia) has secured an investment of 2.5 million in its second round of financing. The company will invest tens of millions in the construction of new ground source heat and cooling systems in the next few years. These recent funds will be used to strengthen the sales organization and also to build the heating and cooling systems themselves. Holdix Oy Ab, Turret Oy Ab and Timo Soininen, who had previously been shareholders in the company, participated in the financing round. Alexander and Albert Ehrnrooth, of the well-known Finnish industrial family, own the also investing Nidoco AB. Nidoco is a subsidiary of the Ehrnrooth family’s Virala Oy Ab.
An affordable and environmentally friendly alternative
Voltan Energy is challenging district heating with its new type of heating and cooling service based on ground source heat energy. “Half of the capital region’s CO2 emissions come from district heating, the price of which has also risen sharply. We want to offer an alternative to district heating, ”says Miikka Lemmetty, CEO of Voltan. Heat generated by ground source heat and heat pump technologies can reduce CO2 emissions from heating by more than 80 percent. In addition, the system allows for cooling the apartments. The individual housing association also benefits from Voltan’s centralized operation and maintenance, which enables cheaper and more efficient heat production than a separate operator. It brings individual apartment buildings lifecycle savings of hundreds of thousands of euros and enables cooling in their homes.
The company implements the cooling by utilizing cooler temperatures in the soil during the summer – by transferring thermal energy from the interior to the soil. Cooling stores heat in the ground for the winter season. This further promotes the environmental friendliness of the service. Ground source cooling also does not require separate outdoor units for housing, which eliminates noise, heat and condensation.
Collaboration with construction companies brings growth
Approximately 800 to 900 new apartment buildings are built in Finland every year, and there are roughly 60,000 such old buildings. In sales, Voltan focuses on fast-scaling new construction projects through cooperation with construction companies. ”We do offer our environmentally friendly and, compared to district heating, affordable heating and cooling solution for old apartment buildings, too” says Miikka Lemmetty, CEO of Voltan. “We have signed cooperation agreements with several major construction companies. Later, we will come to the public with more detailed information.” Voltan Energy initially aims to build about 30 to 50 sites per year in Finland. “This would mean an annual reduction in CO2 emissions of about 1,200 tonnes,” Lemmetty reminds. In the near future, Voltan intends to expand to other Nordic countries and possibly also to Central Europe. In Sweden, geothermal energy is already a familiar phenomenon in large properties. “The tightening international situation has made self-sufficient ground source heating an even more competitive heating and cooling option,” Lemmetty remarks. “If the scarce energy used to run a geothermal system is produced in a renewable way, ground source heat energy is completely emission-free. Geothermal energy is protected from strong fluctuations in energy prices and is reliable in production. ”