Our idea was born after one of my co-founders and fellow student, Alba Forns, and I joined the Friday For Future march in Barcelona in September 2019. As we were marching through the streets there was a moment when I climbed up on a bench to look out over the crowd.
Everyone can contribute to a better future
In that moment I was overcome with hope but surprisingly, also with a deep aching sadness. I felt hope because I could see a real collective desire for change. There was hope in the faces of people young and old; hope that maybe their calls for a more sustainable future would be heard and acted upon. At the same time, I felt this deep sadness because I knew that by tomorrow everyone would have returned to their everyday lives, Pasieg de Gracia would have been cleaned and our emissions levels would still be the the same.
I realised that what we need is a way to use our collective energy to make a concrete difference. I thought about "How can everyone contribute to a better future?" and after some time I realized that everyone across the whole spectrum has: a little spare change. When combined these little investments from our large movement could add up to a lot of money! Thus, the idea for Seeds was born.
Crowdfunding for renewable energy
Seeds is the first renewable energy Financial Technology (FinTech) app using crowdfunding to enable users to invest in projects with as little as their spare change. It connects the user’s credit card, then when they make a purchase, the transaction is rounded up to the nearest euro and that spare change is automatically invest in a project of their choice. The app also shows the carbon offset equivalent of the investment so that users can go carbon neutral on a weekly basis.
Seeds provides a way to align investments with environmental concerns. It also enables users to earn money by utilizing these painless micro-investments to build a savings while knowing where their money is going and the impact it’s creating!
Developing the idea during our studies
As part of the EIT InnoEnergy Master in Renewable Energy programme we have had the opportunity to develop this idea over the course of the last year which has been a great runway to work through the complexities of executing it. As we are gaining momentum, we are receiving additional mentoring through not only from EIT InnoEnergy and the GC Index but also from ESADE’s eWorks accelerator.
Fortunately, after completing our studies together, our team has built the comradery necessary to rise to the challenge of founding a company. While our idea isn’t specifically focused on engineering, we wouldn’t be able to identify market gaps and execute this concept without a thorough understanding of the energy industry. After learning the complexities of analyzing the energy system; learning finance and banking isn’t that challenging with a team of truly talented individuals.
What the future holds
As our team separates to our second-year universities, our plan is to use this as an opportunity to spread our vision, take the time to develop the app and establish the partnerships necessary to launch a pilot project.
Our goal is to make this dream a reality and take Seeds on full-time post-graduation. We have a bold vision for a pan-European platform that creates a virtuous cycle of investment by the masses which can accelerate the energy transition while returning the profits to the people. By using crowdfunding, Seeds has the power to democratise and decentralise finance in a revolutionary way that is more representative of society.
By Will Wiseman, CEO Seeds & EIT InnoEnergy Master in Renewable Energy student