FUTURE OF ENERGY CHALLENGE
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Out of 15 teams who submitted their ideas, 5 winning teams from Round 2 advanced to the Future of Energy Challenge Accelerator at Make the Future Live California in Sonoma, California. The overall winner of the Accelerator was ElecTrip. ElecTrip uses technology, professional drivers, and electric vehicles to transport businesses professionals, corporations, and other customers in between Texas cities to reduce consumers’ carbon footprint while providing an eco-friendly travel option. ElecTrip is now an approved vehicle option for Shell employees traveling in Texas.
The five Challenge-winning teams represented the University of Texas at Austin, Columbia University, the University of Notre Dame and Arizona State University. The teams partnered with Shell experts leading up to the Accelerator to refine their innovative solutions to challenges in mobility, circular economy and energy delivery. At the Accelerator, the teams presented their business models, technologies and supply chain ideas that aim to grow and strengthen integrated energy systems today and in the future. A key feature of the Accelerator was the collaborative approach to innovation with partners inside and beyond the energy sector which helped spark new ideas on how to develop and deploy the teams’ proposals.
After the Accelerator, additional mentoring is being offered to the teams to help them continue developing their ideas into market-ready business proposals. This opportunity includes technical testing and business plan development with industry leaders. Reflecting on the emerging opportunities this platform proposes, Haibin Xu of Shell GameChanger noted, "The Future of Energy Challenge has expanded our interactions with young startups and entrepreneurs who are at early stages of developing their energy idea. This is an exciting opportunity to work with teams focused on unique applications of technology and business models and builds upon the work that Shell GameChanger does with startup companies to test early-stage ideas with the potential to impact the future of energy.”
Picture of all Teams - Future of Energy Challenge finalists from University of Texas at Austin, Columbia University, the University of Notre Dame and Arizona State University at Make the Future Live California 2019. One participant summed up his experience saying, “As finalists, [this competition] has given us the momentum to really explore the idea, pursue the feasibility, make the connections, and make it happen.”
Picture of the Pitch Panel Session - A panel of experts from AT&T Foundry, Lawrence Livermore National Lab, Entek Power Services/Band of Angels, Shell New Energies Research & Technology and Shell Game Changer heard team pitches on their concepts and businesses, providing critiques and feedback on elements that required additional work to progress toward investment and growth in the market.
Accelerator at Sonoma - Teams worked with mentors and consultants virtually and in person at Make the Future Live California addressing critical questions related to technology testing, market dynamics, and other elements of feasibility that may impact their start-up solutions.
Picture at Start-Up Incubator, Runway, in SF - Part of the Accelerator experience included a visit to a start-up incubator Runway, where the finalists met with Sandy Miller, Runway CEO; Will Goto of Humble Dot; and Sherrie Toki of Elemental Excelerator.