Virtual innovator trade mission to Thailand

Building on the success of the Energy Launchpad International pilot (2020-2021) in Thailand and India, Energy Systems Catapult was seeking to build partnerships in Thailand, South Africa and Mexico.

Following two challenge calls, 16 UK innovators were chosen for their unique propositions. They worked closely with Catapult incubation managers and third party experts to learn about their new focus market, adapt their business models and meet potential collaborators.

Energy Launchpad International works closely with innovators to build their business development capacity. Innovators often lack the resources to create full export strategies, and our research shows the two most common things they lack are in-country contacts and market understanding.

The Opportunity

Thailand is an advanced market in terms of recognising the importance of smart energy systems, which presents an opportunity for UK-Thai collaboration.

We carried out Thai market deep dive last year, which identified that Thailand has ambitious policies in place for electrification of transport and the creation of smart cities and power networks. The government has recently announced even more ambitious policies in the sphere of e-mobility and there are early signs of international investment aimed at capitalising on Thailand’s position as an automotive hub in Southeast Asia.

The Challenge

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we were unable to travel to Thailand, South Africa or Mexico. All engagement was done remotely, facilitated by our in-country partners Orissa International, GreenCape and British Chamber of Commerce Mexico.

The remote engagement approach is beneficial in that it extends the engagement window beyond that of traditional trade missions – allowing trusting business relationships to be established and for the UK innovators to adapt their approach to the market.

The Solution

Energy Launchpad International combines our international experience of running missions with our start-up incubation service that provides specialist energy systems expertise, to create a unique programme that responded to the needs of UK net zero innovators.

We draw on experts from across the Catapult and our network of delivery partners to provide an end-to-end export programme tailored to the technologies, business needs and level of maturity of the seven innovators focused on Thailand. The programme ran three overlapping stages (see infographic below).

Seven innovators on the mission to Thailand


BlockDox is a data science focused proptech company solving complex problems using artificial intelligence of things (AIoT). Their patented technology helps organisations who have large real estate portfolios or public transport operators to manage and exceed their sustainability goals, reduce operational wastage, increase profitability and improve space use.

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CityEV designs smart electric vehicle charging technology which can be installed anywhere. Their charge points have regulatory approval, which means they can be mounted on and powered by public street lighting. They can be installed on other public infrastructure such as car parks and public buildings.

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London-based Faradai is a high-tech company whose Carbon Intelligence platform helps companies to automate their data gathering and validation, using emissions factors to efficiently and accurately calculate carbon footprints.

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GreenEnco is a technical consultancy and engineering service provider in solar, energy storage and electric vehicle charging infrastructure projects.

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Holistic Energy

Holistic Energy Ltd was established to develop a range of models that will allow renewable energy to compete with fossil fuels for a range of industrial and commercial purposes.

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OXTO Energy

OXTO Energy is an innovative energy storage company, with the mission to enable the transition to a low-carbon world by stabilising electricity from intermittent renewable sources of energy. It has developed a new energy storage technology that will deliver safe, scalable and low-cost storage.

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Telensa makes wireless smart city applications, with the core of the business focused on smart lighting, helping cities around the world save energy, work smarter and deliver more joined-up services for their citizens.

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The Outputs

Energy Launchpad International aims to bridge the gap between UK innovators and international markets. These can be grouped into two main issues: (1) understanding the market and (2) establishing relationships with local stakeholders.

Our Energy Market Deep Dives offers insight into the mechanics of a country’s power system, with a focus on smart and clean energy solutions. They include case studies of pilots and local business models and the references section can be used to link to further reading. Our deep dives are a valuable resource for innovators to use in creating their export roadmap, giving them access to relevant data and sources of information that they may not have the resources to collect themselves.

Energy Market Deep Dive

Thailand market assessment for smart energy business models

Read the Report

Energy Launchpad International - Thailand Impact Report

Energy Launchpad & International

Opening doors at home and abroad to create your start-up success story…

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