Berlin In Germany there are millions of houses in need of renovation. While new buildings now meet high energy standards, older buildings often need new heating or windows as well as insulation or solar systems in order to emit less CO2 and use less energy.
The Berlin start-up Enter is aimed at homeowners in Germany who want to advance the energy transition with an energy-efficient renovation of their property. Among other things, the start-up has developed a technology that provides owners with an assessment of the energetic condition of their property and, despite the current mood crisis among investors, has attracted the interest of new financiers, who are investing around 19 million euros in Enter.
The capital comes from the US venture capitalist Coatue, the international construction investor Foundamental and Target Global, among others.
Who is the person you are talking about?
Enter was founded in 2020 by Max Schroeren, Justus Menten and Alex Müller under the name Baupal. Enter currently employs 75 people; 20 of them are certified energy efficiency consultants. The workforce is expected to double by the end of the year.
Enter’s offer is based on several pillars. On the one hand, homeowners can use the platform to get an initial assessment of the energetic condition of their property free of charge. Enter uses artificial intelligence. “We have a learning system that is becoming more and more intelligent with the help of customer data,” says company founder Menten.
The start-up also offers on-site energy advice, develops an individual renovation schedule and takes care of the necessary funding applications. “90 percent of our customers receive the recommendation to first insulate the facade or install new windows. It doesn’t always have to be the heat pump,” says Menten, referring to the recent boom in heat pump technology.
How are the chances?
Enter is based on a trend topic. On the one hand, housing construction in Germany is stagnating, on the other hand, homeowners are faced with high energy costs and renovation requirements. In the EU, a legislative project is on the home straight, according to which houses and apartments, which have so far been classified in the worst energy classes, must achieve a higher energy standard by the end of the decade.
Many property owners now want to get an overview of the costs and develop a schedule for the renovation. The start-up feels this. “We have extreme momentum. We are currently growing very significantly,” says co-founder Max Schroeren. Target Global partner Ricardo Schäfer justifies his latest investment: “Enter is the only platform that accompanies homeowners throughout the entire process from a holistic analysis of the property to financing and implementation, and thus makes a significant contribution to the energy transition.”
Enter now wants to use the tailwind and the fresh capital injection to win more customers. According to Schroeren, who used to work for McMakler, the company will advise a six-figure number of users by the end of the year.
Like many start-ups, Schroeren does not want to give an insight into the company figures and only says that sales have increased sixfold in the past few months: “Customers pay us for advice and for taking over the application for funding. We receive commissions from our partners.”
Because of the high investments in the business, Enter is currently in the red. The aim is to be profitable again in two years, says Schroeren. So far there is hardly any direct competition. However, there are also thousands of independent energy consultants on the road in Germany who make proposals for renovation.
>>Read more about the topic here: “The situation is worse than ever.”
Enter has big plans. Although the company is currently concentrating on Germany, Enter wants to become a global brand in the long term. The investors are convinced that this can succeed. The product and momentum put Enter “in the best position to achieve market leadership in the long term,” says Foundamental Partner Patric Hellermann.
Enter itself now wants to expand the offer and also include financing options in the portfolio. That could go down well with property owners.
An energetic renovation costs a lot of money. The Haus & Grund Germany owners’ association estimates costs of 1000 to 1500 euros per square meter. In the case of a 100 square meter single-family house, the modernization could cost up to 150,000 euros.
However, Schroeren points out that owners will benefit financially from the renovation in the long term: “Nowadays, a property’s value is also determined by its energy efficiency class,” says the founder.
More: More start-up checks can be found here