Leclanché working on 'business shift to build energy as a service platform'

by John Shepherd
Karl Bohman: 'Building an energy as a service platform.' Photo: Leclanché
Swiss battery storage company Leclanché has signalled plans to expand its commercial partnerships, as the firm shifts to the 'as a service' business model for its energy products and technical expertise.

Karl Bohman, executive VP of Leclanché’s stationary business group, said the company was preparing for a "business shift”, by setting up a build-own-operate business to offer energy as a service.

"It is a new paradigm and there are not many others going down that path – yet. There are, in fact, some companies that act as a virtual power plant and are starting to offer energy as a service.”

Bohman said: "We want to remove the friction of large scale capital expenditure involving specifiying a system; purchasing the batteries, inverters, energy management and battery management system software; and paying for construction and implementation. Instead, they would pay for it as a typical operating expense (OPEX).

Service platform

"We know how to design, build and operate projects seamlessly,” Bohman said. "The challenge now is to become more agile and execute on our vision faster… Leclanché will need to form partnerships with other entities, contributing our technology, knowledge and expertise to build this energy as a service platform.”

Bohman, former head of business development at Swedish lithium-ion battery manufacturer Northvolt, and CEO of SaltX Technology, joined Leclanché last October.

Last month, Indian lead-acid battery maker, Exide Industries, said it had increased its majority stake in the lithium-ion joint venture it formed with Leclanché in 2018 – Nexcharge. Exide’s stake increased from 77.87% to 80.15%.

The joint venture is focused on the electric transport market – including e-buses, e-wheelers and e-rickshaws – in addition to stationary energy storage systems and speciality storage markets.