Now that the Cisco International Drawback Solver Problem 2022 winners have been formally introduced, you’ll need to study extra about every successful group and the story behind every innovation. The Cisco International Drawback Solver Problem is a web-based competitors that awards money prizes to early-stage tech entrepreneurs fixing the world’s hardest issues. Since 2017, the competitors has awarded $3.25 million USD to 78 start-ups from 25 international locations.
We’re excited so that you can study extra in regards to the 2022 successful groups addressing a number of the greatest challenges we face via technology-based options.
In response to the rising urgency to reverse local weather change, we launched 5 new Local weather Impression and Regeneration prizes totaling $300,000 USD. These prizes acknowledge options that may cut back or take away greenhouse fuel (GHG) from the atmosphere or regenerate depleted ecosystems.
Meet Unergy, a start-up primarily based out of Colombia that gained a $50,000 USD Local weather Impression & Regeneration Runner-Up Prize. Their resolution assists firms and organizations that wish to convert to scrub power, however discover it cost-prohibitive, by offering a simple platform for them to attach with traders who’re wanting to fund clear power initiatives in growing markets.
I sat down with Eduardo Ospina, the CEO and co-founder of Unergy, and Natalia Isaza, Unergy’s Chief Content material Officer. They shared how they’re attempting to democratize the combat towards local weather change, how Unergy thrived throughout the pandemic, and their ardour for marrying know-how and sustainability.
What drawback is your know-how resolution attempting to resolve? Are you able to clarify how the answer works?
Eduardo: I believe the most important work for humanity proper now could be the combat towards local weather change. Presently, the world wants greater than $2.4 trillion of funding into clear power to keep away from a local weather catastrophe. Nevertheless, even with all of the work that’s being completed all over the world right this moment, the present stage of funding solely quantities to about 30 % of that quantity.
We’ve seen that, in Latin America, and in different rising markets, there’s a large necessity for liquidity to finance clear power initiatives. For instance, photo voltaic power has a excessive return price and good metrics to change into a actuality, however organizations have been unable to afford it. Continuously, firms that say they need to spend money on clear power discover that funding prices are too excessive.
However, we see lots of people like us at Unergy which have the liquidity and the will to finance clear power initiatives, however don’t have a simple strategy to do it. So, Unergy joins these two completely different teams to resolve the issue by connecting organizations who need to spend money on clear power with individuals to place cash into their initiatives. It permits us to democratize and decentralize power. For instance, with Unergy, somebody situated in the US or elsewhere will be capable to spend money on clear power initiatives for firms in Latin America or in different rising markets.
Natalia: By means of our know-how, we enable any particular person to be part of supporting power transformation all over the world. We enable the chance for individuals to spend cash on clear power not simply in Colombia, however in every single place.
What impressed you to develop this resolution?
Eduardo: I began the corporate with my two companions, Nicolás and Paola. We began Unergy as a result of we have been attempting for some years to promote photo voltaic power to firms, however we in the end realized that the most important barrier—and the most important necessity—for clear power is financing. From there, we determined that moderately than promoting clear power merchandise, we might assist finance them and assist join others who need to finance clear power with firms that want the cash.
We’re a pandemic firm. We have been engaged on the thought a few yr beforehand, however we formally began in March 2020 simply when the pandemic started. That ended up being an excellent factor. Earlier than the pandemic, firms used to have extra liquidity for initiatives and didn’t suppose rather a lot about several types of monetary group. Because the pandemic, firms have began to actually take into consideration how they will save and the way they could possibly be extra sustainable. Unergy is the very best match for that as a result of we’re providing financial savings. We’re providing sustainability. So, I believe it was an excellent second for us to open.
Natalia: I joined Unergy later. I used to be employed to enhance some processes in communication and advertising and marketing, and I simply actually believed within the concept. I related with the mission and imaginative and prescient of the corporate, and I simply fell in love with the concept that we might assist present clear power to anyone.
What’s revolutionary about the way in which you’re fixing the difficulty? What units your resolution aside?
Eduardo: I believe that it’s comparatively regular for these with numerous funding to need to spend money on clear power. What is exclusive about Unergy is that we dream in regards to the democratization and decentralization of fresh power. For instance, in Latin America, three large gamers are the house owners of all the power in these international locations. What’s essential to us is not only financing clear power initiatives, but additionally permitting for retail traders and other people from all over the world to speculate.
How will successful a prize within the Cisco International Drawback Solver Problem allow you to advance what you are promoting?
Eduardo: We’re increasing proper now into Brazil, and into European international locations that want extra funding in clear power. The extra we broaden, we can obtain a much bigger impression, so we shall be utilizing all the cash on worldwide enlargement and sharing our aim of reducing the $2.4 trillion in funding wanted to fight local weather change.
What recommendation do you could have for different social entrepreneurs?
Eduardo: I believe you need to cross your private motivations with the aim of the corporate. Personally, I like what I do. I like to be right here, I like to journey, and I like to dedicate my life to fixing this concern as a result of I actually do need to make an enormous distinction on the planet. Since I used to be younger, I’ve been enthusiastic about inventing issues, about sustainability, about power and electrical energy. Then, once I was in College, I spotted that it wasn’t nearly inventing issues; it was about inventing issues with a function and inventing issues with the ambition that it might impression the world in a really constructive means. I believe being an entrepreneur may be very laborious for lots of people, however in case you can benefit from the challenges you need to face to develop, and in case you can benefit from the belongings you do, it’s higher.
Natalia: If you happen to can combine data of the continual replace of know-how with the will to resolve social or environmental issues, you’ll be the very best firm that may impression the most individuals. I agree with Eduardo that you have to join your private goals with the imaginative and prescient and mission of the corporate. And if you wish to be right here and proceed right here and be motivated, you need to be able to study day-after-day. I need to do one thing for the world and for individuals, and I like to attach sustainability with know-how.
Keep tuned for extra articles in our weblog collection, that includes interviews with each Cisco International Drawback Solver Problem 2022 successful group!