How Next Day Ventures has brought the solar-tech “Project Forum” to new life
Jan Gäde and Karsten Kreissler had recognized a potential in their industry: They paired their industry expertise with a good idea and founded their own startup. Their startup, ProjectForum, is a marketplace where buyers and sellers of solar projects can meet. This is not about two solar modules on the roof of a house, but about commercial and industrial solar power plants. This niche market has few buyers and even fewer sellers, but a lot of turnover, because solar plants in this area are quickly priced in the millions.
ProjectForum is a marketplace for solar projects and investments.
The two founders took the step to the market early on and managed their product manually; just as it should be done with an MVP or with Pre-Selling . Customer data was partly entered manually, communication took place individually - Jan and Karsten had plenty to do with their business.
Now it would have been time to scale up - to automate the processes to generate more customers and more revenue. But neither Jan nor Karsten were able to build such a product. And they agreed: they did not want to be dependent on an external developer. Bad experiences and lack of trust had closed them to this option. So it was almost over with ProjectForum before it could really grow - the two founders put the project on ice.
Internal development, thanks to tech partnership with Next Day Ventures
It was only when the two solar experts became aware of Next Day Ventures that things heated up again in the startup: the founders were convinced of the price and, above all, of the principle of a tech partnership. As a result of Next Day Ventures' shareholding in ProjectForum, the development was no longer external, but was managed by Next Day Ventures as internal CTO.
“The whole team was keenly interested in the product and the special market environment. They understood us and the product and asked the right questions, thanks to which we were able to specify the product even more appropriately”.
– Jan Gäde, co-founder of ProjectForum
Here you can see the homepage of the digital marketplace:
The VIPERdev development team automated the product as a new development within two months; the finished platform solution was back on the market as a completely renewed product after three months - and this time ready to scale-up.
The product is very easy to use: Simply enter the search criteria and receive all suitable projects and important information about the project. Confidential information about sellers and assets, remains hidden without prior verification of the buyer.
“The team has understood what we need for our startup. Next Day Ventures brought us back to the market in a very short time and achieved a lot for us in a short period of time through creative implementation. The software stack is now very modern and simply better than anything we used before.
– Karsten Kreissler, co-founder of ProjectForum
Since then, the business has revived and is scaling up its customer base and revenues. Within one month a 3-digit user base has already been established. This is quite respectable for the size of the market, also considering the price tags on the photovoltaic systems, which can quickly reach the mid-seven-digit range.
Next Day Ventures continues to maintain a close exchange with the startup and consults with the founders in weekly meetings about growth and next steps. The founders benefit from the experience of the tech partner’s various ventures. Even though Jan and Karsten are proven experts in their market with more than 15 years of experience in the solar industry, a little trusting advice is very advantageous when setting up a company.
“We are happy about our decision. We got our desired product, at a lower price than a normal agency. The ongoing sessions are also valuable for us and manifest the long-term cooperation”, say the founders of the online marketplace.
Next Day Ventures is also pleased about the successful cooperation on this extraordinary product with two founders with profound industry experience. We are looking forward to upcoming collaborations and exciting projects!
Would you like to work with us as well or are you wondering if this could be a suitable option for you? Here you can make a free appointment and talk to us about your ideas, or send us your request via our contact form.