Innovation Skåne

Sponsored solar energy for a better world

Luv Solar – a brighter future through sponsored solar energy. Individuals get access to free and clean energy. Businesses build long-term customer relations and stronger brands. That’s how Luv Solar wants to turn marketing money into a greater benefit for people and the planet.

The founders of Luv Solar, Joshua Kirkman and Stephen Curtis, met while studying Industrial Electrical Engineering and Automation IEEA in Lund. Although they saw great potential in solar energy, they saw a number of challenges. Investment cost is a big obstacle for households to invest in their own solar cells, but behaviour and evidence are challenges, too.

– Somebody has to lead the way. We have to put solar cells on more roofs to show that it works, then more will follow. It’s a wonderful group behaviour, explains Joshua Kirkman.

The challenges became the driving force that led to a new business idea. At the same time investment costs prevent private households from investing in solar energy, businesses fight to find new ways to create long-term relationships with their target groups and society in general.

– We want to offer a marketing platform that brings together businesses and solar energy-interested households in their target groups, says Joshua.

How does it work?
– We want to let companies sponsor the solar cell investments and, for a period of time, maintain contact with the selected households through channels like social media. It creates positive, real-world experiences that in turn become stories people want to spread. In this way, companies can get positive attention, households gain access to free energy, and we contribute to the spread of solar energy.

What’s happening now?
– We won some business idea competitions and received a lot of attention already during the idea phase. Now we’re going to test the idea for real with a family in Malmö while we develop the marketing package. Because our business is affected by the weather, we’re trying to prepare during the winter to be ready to sell in April and install in May or June.

How do you contribute to growth and benefit society?
– A changed energy system is the key to a better world. The sun gives us free energy—all people need are solar cells. We hope we have found a way for more individuals to become energy producers and show others the possibilities. In this way, more energy money can be spent on other things and contribute to the local economy.

What have you gained from working with Innovation Skåne?
– We come from environmental backgrounds. Business language did not come naturally to us. Innovation Skåne was our first contact in the business world. Our advisor Jack Austern has, among other things, helped us to talk with our customers in the right way and explain the business benefits of our offer.

What do your future plans look like?
– Now we’re focused on Skåne and then Sweden. Then we want to test in Australia. If that works, we’ll go global.

Joshua Kirkman expresses great gratitude to Sweden for his startup journey so far.

– I come from Australia, where I probably wouldn’t have received this type of help. Here there’s a very interesting and welcoming innovation culture with extremely good people and support.

Read more about Innovation Skåne’s business advisory