Malaysia’s PETRONAS invests in renewable energy start-up
Malaysia’s state-owned oil and gas company PETRONAS, through its corporate venture capital arm, PETRONAS Ventures, recently inked an agreement with SOLS Energy Sdn Bhd to invest in the solar photovoltaic (PV) system start-up that provides sustainable energy for residential and small-to-medium enterprise (SME) sectors in Malaysia.
This is PETRONAS’ second venture capital investment initiative which aims to strengthen its commitment in the renewable energy space as a solutions partner. The transaction is expected to be completed at the end of July this year.
SOLS Energy is an innovative one-stop solution company that designs, distributes, maintains and installs high quality solar energy systems at a competitive rate. It also runs the first Solar Academy in Malaysia that offers technical skills in the solar industry and personal development training to local youth.
“We believe that this investment will complement PETRONAS’ New Energy business growth in the solar market, as the SOLS Energy team has the passion and determination to propel the sustainable industry,” Head of PETRONAS Ventures Mohd Azli Ishak said.
The initiative with SOLS Energy is in line with PETRONAS’ Sustainability Agenda and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 4, 7, 8 and 13 that focus on the provision of quality technical education to youths, promotion of sustainable economic growth as well as reduction in greenhouse gas emissions through generation of clean energy.
SOLS Energy’s Chief Executive Officer Raj Ridvan said the company aspires to future-proof the world through the power of technology and sustainable energy.
“Our mission is to connect people and businesses to real sustainable energy solutions. We believe solar PV system adoption is at an inflection point in Malaysia, and with the government’s regulation on net energy metering and lower equipment cost, we see a huge potential market size in Malaysia and South East Asia.”
A graduate of PETRONAS’ FutureTech Accelerator programme in 2019, SOLS Energy also counts 500 Startups, a global venture capitalist, as one of its investors. PETRONAS FutureTech is a technology accelerator programme to encourage local innovations and support Malaysian startups to succeed in the global marketplace. The programme, the first of its kind in Malaysia, aims to discover and nurture home-grown technology entrepreneurs, scale them up to global standards as well as build and influence the tech-driven startup ecosystem in the country.
PETRONAS Ventures actively scouts for visionary entrepreneurs in Malaysia and around the globe to solve critical problems in the industrial and energy space through breakthrough technology and innovative business models to support its business growth and sustainability agenda.
Established in 2019, PETRONAS Ventures drives technology innovation to maintain PETRONAS’ competitive edge in this ever disruptive and challenging business environment, a move to support its core oil and gas business and to position itself for further growth. Its investment verticals focus on Industry 4.0, advance materials and specialty chemicals as well as future of energy. PETRONAS Ventures will invest in early to growth stage companies, and will leverage on PETRONAS’ global network across the energy value chain to achieve strong alignment and strategic fit with its co-investors and partners, in helping startups to scale up.
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