Enova calls on community to fund its national expansion

Enova community
Enova Community also relies on volunteers to help the not-for-profit arm, such as coaches who teach people how to reduce their energy bills

Enova launched a new crowdfunding campaign this week to help the community-owned energy retail company based in Byron Bay expand into other parts of the country.

Enova managing director Tony Pfeiffer told The Fifth Estate that the company currently has more than 5000 customers – exceeding the target customer numbers set out in its original prospectus – and that annual revenues had topped $5.2 million.

Mr Pfeiffer also said the company has around 20 employees, including a couple of new hires.

Enova Community also relies on volunteers to help the not-for-profit arm, such as coaches who teach people how to reduce their energy bills.

To keep growing, Mr Pfieffer said the company first needs to increase its customer base and make sure its core offering is viable.

The plan is to streamline operations and reduce costs so that the company can offer a “sharper” and more affordable product.

“People want to buy green and support their local communities, but ultimately cost can hold them back,” Mr Pfieffer said.

Enova

The company is also hoping to raise $3 million in capital through the crowdfunding campaign launched this week.

If all goes well, the company is poised to expand into other towns across NSW, Queensland, South Australia, and Victoria.

Shares issued will be $1 each, with a minimum purchase of $100.

“The low minimum subscription provides an opportunity for more people to invest and in doing so, help drive a community-led transition,” Enova Community Energy chair Alison Crook said.

Claiming to be Australia’s first community-owned energy retail company, Enova purchases the excess energy produced by community-based renewables projects.

The company’s aim is to make clean, low-cost renewable energy available to all households, regardless of income.

“Enova is dedicated to the evolution of the energy industry and through various innovative pilot projects like solar gardens and microgrids, we are already leading communities to take charge of owning and producing their own renewable power and in turn lower their costs,” Mr Pfeiffer said.

In what is apparently a first for the sector, the energy retail arm of the company, Enova Energy, channels 50 per cent of its profits to its not-for-profit arm, Enova Community.

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