It was a big bummer when corona suddenly closed the airspace. The Green World Company was doing just as well internationally. Still, thanks in part to the COL, the company managed to keep calm. 'We could get on with what we were doing.'
The ambition is not wrong. The Green World Company wants to become the best and most respected company in the field of renewable energy. Indeed, the Sneek-based company is thinking big. 'But big on a scale that suits us Northerners,' says Fedde Pronk, who together with Jeroen Veenema forms the board of directors. 'The energy concepts must be feasible.'
Since its founding in 2017, the company has already taken nice steps toward realizing that ambition. Not only nationally, but also internationally, The Green World Company has been and continues to be involved in numerous high-profile projects. 'We are increasingly shifting from a consultant to a party that also designs, realizes and operates the concepts,' Fedde clarifies the development the company is going through. 'Exactly as we envisioned it at the start.'
The advance of The Green World Company seemed unstoppable. Until Jeroen received a phone call from Fedde last March 15. Jeroen was on Saba at the time. There, on the Dutch island in the Caribbean, the company was building a second solar farm. Earlier, The Green World Company had ensured that Saba was no longer dependent on diesel generators for its energy supply, but ran entirely on sun and batteries. 'Tomorrow there will be a press conference in the Netherlands announcing corona measures,' said Fedde, who himself had returned from Curaçao that day. 'Make sure you leave the island as soon as possible. Soon you probably won't be able to.' Jeroen did not hesitate for a moment and immediately grabbed the plane to the Netherlands. The last flight. Right on time, it turned out.
Suddenly the foreign projects were literally out of reach. In the Netherlands, however, the sector in which The Green World Company operates was allowed to continue building. That eased the pain somewhat. We were a bit frightened," recalls Fedde. How long will this last? We have always financed everything with our own funds. Because then you are not dependent on a bank it gives you a certain amount of freedom. But it also means that when, as now, a crisis breaks out you can't call on a bank. So temporarily stopping repayments, increasing your current account or taking out an extra mortgage is out of the question for all of us. Our advantage is that we are an organization with a flexible shell. Fortunately, we didn't have to say goodbye to anyone.
It soon became clear that work abroad would take some time. With all the consequences for sales that would entail. Still, with an eye on the future, it was important for The Green World Company to continue to develop sustainable innovations. And so other financial opportunities were diligently sought. Fedde and Jeroen were made aware of the COL by their accountant. An application was immediately submitted. Unfortunately just a little too late, the budget for the first tranche had already been exhausted. In the second tranche a new application followed. This time with more success. Fedde: 'Shortly after the submission, Klaas Kooistra, Investment Manager of the NOM, contacted us. He thought it was a good story and was positive about it. He did ask us to describe a number of things in more concrete terms. We did that and just a few days later we heard that the COL had been definitively granted. A huge relief, of course. We could get on with what we were doing. '
The COL is a bridging loan for The Green World Company until the foreign activities can be fully resumed. At the same time, the loan is also partly used to (further) develop innovations and to be able to continue sustainable energy projects in the Netherlands. For example, full efforts are currently being made on two pioneering concepts: Solar Basin and Sun for Asbestos. 'Our Solar Basin concept was specially developed for greenhouse horticulture,' explains Jeroen. 'Growers in this sector usually have a lot of empty surfaces, in the form of water basins. Those basins are also suitable for solar panels. For floating solar panels, to be precise. That's why we came up with a floating substructure, a seaworthy aluminum float and support structure. Aluminum is stronger and more durable than plastic and has a high residual value. You can put more panels on it, so the yield per surface area is greater. At the end of its service life, aluminum is completely recyclable. In this way we are not only helping the greenhouse horticulture sector to become more sustainable, but also in their pursuit of better operating results.'
Sun for Asbestos
The other concept developed by The Green World Company, Sun for Asbestos, is designed to replace existing asbestos roofs with a new roof with solar installation at no cost. The company takes care of the entire process from A to Z. 'Building owners and companies can buy energy directly from the solar roof,' Jeroen emphasizes. 'With Sun for Asbestos, we ensure, in short, that local sustainable power plants are created. That's great, of course.'
Both concepts are catching on; the response is great. The Green World Company supports and advises interested parties in applying for the SDE++, a subsidy that stimulates sustainable energy production and CO2 reduction. 'We still have quite a basket of approved subsidies lying around,' says Fedde. 'We can just start implementing those. At the same time, we are already very cautiously working on our projects abroad. Despite the fact that the corona crisis is far from behind us, we therefore look to the future with confidence.'
In this white paper:
- What challenges do you face and how do you deal with them?
- Becoming investor ready in four steps!
- An overview of all funding options
Please note that this whitepaper is only available in Dutch at the moment. We are in the process of translating this whitepaper.