Swedish impact startups have received 25 times more VC investment over the past decade than any other Nordic country. Sweden has become the top European impact startup ecosystem by VC money invested, surpassing the UK and Germany from €1.3 billion in 2020 to €3.6 billion in 2021.
Qvantum, a Swedish company that makes heat-pump systems and technology, recently closed its $44M Series B capital raising. With the new capital, Qvantum plans to accelerate the go-to-market of its next generation electric heat-pumps and innovative technology in densely populated urban areas and cities across Europe.
The lead investors include Thomas von Koch (Partner and ex CEO of global private equity firm EQT) investing through his private company, IMAS Foundation (a sister foundation to the INGKA Foundation, owner of INGKA Group operating most IKEA stores globally).
Munters, the global leader in energy-efficient air treatment and climate solutions, also joined the financing round and will enter into a co-operation agreement with Qvantum. Other Series B investors are SEB Greentech, DIG Investment (connected to the H&M Persson family) and Gullspång Invest. Mats Rahmström, CEO of Atlas Copco, is also investing through his private company and joins Qvantum as industrial advisor.
The net-zero journey
The European heating markets are highly dependent on import and usage of fossil natural gas. Heating and cooling systems using low-carbon electric energy will play a vital role in replacing fossil fuel combustion as soon as possible as combustion of fossil fuels must be promptly phased out.
With the European Green Deal, the European Commission has set bold ambitions – to become the world’s first climate-neutral continent. By 2030, switching to electric heat pumps could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by half a gigatonne, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).
With Qvantum, founded in Sweden in 1993, everyone can enjoy emission-free heating and cooling in densely populated areas with high-quality electric heat pumps.
In addition to heat pumps, the company specialises in energy systems engineering and works closely with consultants, installers, and contractors. developers and utilities. Having worked for companies such as E.ON and NIBE, Qvantum has pan-European experience in design and deployment.
In all advanced European economies, the IEA predicts the heat pump industry will grow at disruptive rates. In order to achieve the REPowerEU package, exponential growth is required over the next decade (CAGR 20%) and the heating market must be almost completely converted from fossil boilers to heat pumps. A total of 2 million heat pumps were sold in Europe in 2021 (with an addressable market of 8-10 EUR billion).
As a result of the new funding, Qvantum will be able to finalise its new production site in Åstorp (capacity of 50 000 heat pump per year) and launch next generation modular electric heat pumps in Europe using natural refrigerant. In densely populated areas, the heat pumps would be ideal for many applications because they are emissions-free, reliable, and cost-effective.
“Qvantum is uniquely positioned to become a major player providing solutions to combat the climate crisis – the heat pump market is growing exponentially, and our offering can contribute significantly to decarbonizing European cities. We give people living in urban areas the chance to become fossil fuel independent by making carbon neutral heating easily accessible. We can mitigate the impact of rising energy prices while accelerating the clean energy transition. And we are thrilled to have the support from professional long-term investors who allows us, as a firm, to develop even further and faster”, says Fredrik Rosenqvist, Qvantum’s CEO.
”I am deeply impressed by the team behind Qvantum, they possess world leading experience from energy systems, innovative technologies and high-quality production. A talented team with a strong purpose to electrify and decarbonize Europe is what attracted me to Qvantum”, says Thomas von Koch.
“IMAS is committed to decarbonisation and is looking for investments that enable the transition towards a sustainable society and where our capital can make a difference. Energy transition is an important theme and Qvantum represents an interesting opportunity to support the clean transition for heating“, states Petter Odhnoff, CEO at IMAS Foundation.
”Backing Qvantum from the Series A round, we have had the privilege to closely follow the stellar Qvantum team during the last year. We are very impressed by the Company’s product development, commercialisation, the new factory, and ability to fund raise in current market conditions that will give the Company the opportunity to accelerate the decarbonisation of Europe.”, states Erik Ekfeldt, Founding Partner at NEA Partners and board member of Qvantum.
“As an Article 9 fund focused on climate change mitigation, we are of course excited about the decarbonization potential of Qvantum, but meeting our ‘dark green’ Article 9 requires quite a bit more” says Malin Carlström, General Partner of Climentum Capital and board member of Qvantum.
“Our companies need to not only significantly reduce carbon emission but also avoid harming any of the other sustainability goals of EU – while also being a high performer on general ESG issue management, meeting multiple UN and OECD requirements on good governance. Qvantum is a great example of a company that we consider a truly sustainable and impactful company.”
Currently employing 70 people in Limhamn, Sweden, Qvantum is rapidly scaling up.