Meet the founders – SurPlusMap
1 – Can you briefly explain what your solution is all about? What’s unique about it?
SurplusMap is a geospatial intelligence software-as-a-service platform that empowers decision-makers in the green transition to decide WHERE to develop new green industries. Think of it as Google Maps for complex decisions regarding climate action and the green transition.
We want to create a no-code geo-intelligence platform explicitly designed to increase the speed and quality of decisions on where to build green industries.
We are building our product with use-cases from Norway, the only country in the world with a 99 % renewable energy profile. Norway is 5-7 years ahead in terms of electrification of the economy and the green transition. We want to input this knowledge into SurplusMap geospatial intelligence to empower decision-makers and help them make better and faster decisions on the
2- What’s the story behind your company? How was the idea for this business born?
Our idea was born from the out of the many industrial challenges that is the green transition. We met our first customer, a large hydropower producer, during an industry sprint in Norway. The question they had was how to monetize surplus energy of their hydropower plants without building more grid infrastructure. This is a global problem of green energy generation, as it creates imbalances and waste due to the limitations in the grid and the characteristics of our current energy system.
Our solution is SurplusMap, a geo-intelligence platform that will help them identify the green industry they should build to take advantage of the surplus energy. With that approach, we create win-win scenarios where the energy company can increase their
revenues and green industries can access cheaper green energy.
3- Which is the challenge that your solution tackles, and how do you set apart from the other companies with similar solutions?
To make the green transition happen, we need to invest a lot of resources in new capital-intensive green industries that are carbon-free, and we have to do it really quickly. What we want to help answer with SurplusMap is WHERE we should do it.
Our customers have a critical and challenging job, and they have to get it right. We see them spending a lot of time and effort gathering data from different sources and using analysis tools that are not good enough. We want to make their jobs easier so they can make good decisions and foster the green transition. SurplusMap provides our customers with an interactive map that contains relevant and reliable geospatial data, all in one place. This map, powered by satellite data, works as a source of truth that will help our customers collaborate and negotiate efficiently with key stakeholders. Using Surplusmap, our customers save time gathering data and are able to engage more efficiently with other stakeholders. The end goal is to help increase the quality and speed of the early phases of green industrial projects and make the green transition happen.
What sets us apart is that the core of SurplusMap’s business is to make measurable SDG impact (SDG 13 Climate Action). The more subscriptions we sell around the world, the more green transition projects.
4- What are your goals, and what’s the biggest challenge you are trying to overcome at this moment?
Our goal is to land a couple of pilot projects by the end of the year to continue building our MVP. We are currently in the early stages of two exciting projects involving scouting for data center sites and green hydrogen production sites, two emerging green industries. To achieve that, we need to grow our team and find amazing teammates that can contribute to our mission, specifically in data science, EOT, and product design (UX&UI). As an early-stage startup, we are always looking for investors that can bring added value, are commercially driven, and want to make an impact.
5- What advice would you give to an entrepreneur trying to pave his/her way in the space sector landscape?
SurplusMap is all about bringing space-tech down to earth to address the green transition. I think we are in a unique place and time due to the accessibility of space-related technologies to build robust and transformative products, using space technology that seemed unreachable only a few years ago. I think recognizing that opportunity is essential. As an entrepreneur, you need to understand the team’s strengths and be aware of blind spots. You should always focus on your team’s strengths and seek help when you need to mitigate any of your team’s blind spots. That is one of the reasons we decided to apply to SUN
6- About SUN, why did you apply?
We have a solid, experienced team with complementary skills within climate change and mapping science, renewables and finance, and tech development. Nevertheless, after engaging with the ESA in Norway, we realized that we needed additional EOT and downstream space-tech competencies. We found that the SUN program was exactly what we needed. So far, our experience has been fantastic, and we hope we can be part of the follow-up programs.