Amid rising prices for fossil fuels the Estonian Roofit.solar faces strong demand for its solar metal roofs with Nordic-style design thus turning more house roofs into aesthetic and cost-efficient small power plants.
Only a few years ago it all started as a personal matter of taste: When it came to planning his own house construction, Andri Jagomägi (founder) – a scientific researcher at Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech) in the area of solar energy materials and their applications – wanted an electricity-generating solar roof that looked like a “regular roof”.
As the already existing solutions were costly, bulky and unaesthetic, Jagomägi decided to develop the desired product himself. He founded Roofit.solar in 2016. A little later Andres Anijalg (CEO) and Raimond Russak (CFO) joined as co-founders adding extensive experience in the energy industry as well as project management skills to the team. “The first Roofit.solar roofs were installed in Estonia in 2017, combining traditional look with innovative solar technology”, recalls Andres Anijalg proudly and explains the product: “Our solar roof modules act as roof covering and power generator at the same time. They represent building integrated photovoltaic construction elements that replace the conventional roofing materials while electricity is produced in a layer integrated into the metal sheet. This can then be used, be stored in a battery or sent back to the electrical grid offering an eco-innovative approach with a Scandinavian architecture-style design. A carbon neutral economy and a good living environment must not contradict each other.”
Product contributes to green energy transition
Meanwhile, policy initiatives worldwide are boosting the deployment of commercial and residential photovoltaic projects. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that – soon after having started the company in a garage near TalTech on their own budget – the founders not only attracted global interest for their product but also managed to raise EUR 2.6 m from angel and seed investors.
In 2018 they could start their own production facility near Tallinn and generate first export revenues. Three years later BayWa r.e. Energy Ventures as lead investor beside other equipped the young company with another EUR 6,4 m in a Series-A round. BayWa r.e. Energy Ventures-representative Greg Zavorotniy explains: “Roofit.solar caught our attention with its metal solar roof solution that is unique in terms of its aesthetic appearance, ease of installation as well as low system cost and reduced carbon footprint. With huge market potential, it could make a meaningful contribution to the green energy transition. From an investment perspective, we believe Roofit represents the next logical step in the solar industry and with its scalable product can become the leader in the multibillion-dollar BIPV market.”
Strong customer demand drives extension of Series-A round
In the meantime, about 300 roofs have been sold equaling to about 3000 kW. On average, one 10 kW solar roof eliminates around four tons of carbon emissions annually which is roughly equivalent to planting over 100 trees per year. Currently, the company is automating and expanding the production line and further developing its own roof-planning software, but also opening offices in key export regions such as Germany and Scandinavia. A compound annual sales growth rate of 156 percent over the last four years gives an indication of the strong customer demand. “In the first quarter of 2022 we already surpassed the total sales volume of 2021”, states CEO Andres Anijalg. “Therefore, we will be working on a EUR 10m+ round to further accelerate growth. Uncertainty of the energy supply, extremely high power prices in the context of electrification and strong EU level political initiatives like EU Green Deal, Fit for 55, REPowerEU etc. give us the unique opportunity and obligation to prepare and be ready for the upcoming green renovation wave.”