Innovators Network

Demonstrate and Deploy Clean Energy

Grid Catalyst was established to elevate Minnesota’s leadership in climate action and innovation, while also expanding the opportunities for clean energy jobs. To do so, we need a broad network of partners to provide a pathway for emerging businesses to demonstrate and deploy their solutions. Read more about the Innovators Network and the opportunity.

Pledge your support for clean energy innovation by hosting a demonstration project in partnership with a clean energy startup. The pledge is non-binding and a rigorous process will be used to vet and pair cohort businesses with demonstration sites. These partnerships are essential in establishing the real-world applications and potential of our emerging technologies. To deploy and scale, we have to demonstrate at scale.

Reach out to our team to discuss the possibilities – nina@gridcatalyst.org.

Innovators network

2022 Demonstration Partners

Grid Catalyst was established to elevate Minnesota’s leadership in climate action and innovation, while also expanding the opportunities for clean energy jobs.

To do so, we need a broad network of partners to provide a pathway for emerging businesses to demonstrate and deploy their solutions. In advance of recruiting our 2022 demonstration cohort, we have 12 organizations that have pledged interest in hosting or facilitating a project through their facilities or networks. These partners will play a key role in helping us identify implementable and high priority technologies. Read the announcement and coverage from TC Business Magazine on our news page.

  • Grid Catalyst was launched in 2021 to accelerate clean energy deployment.
  • It is the only clean energy accelerator focused on project demonstration and deploying solutions for northern climate challenges.
  • It is a signature program of Clean Energy Economy Minnesota (CEEM), an industry‐led, 501(c)3 nonprofit.

Host Partners

Conduit Partners

Joining the Innovators Network

We are seeking early‐stage partners to join our Innovators Network, with two available roles:

Benefits Provided to Innovation Network Partners

Innovators network
Impact ‐ Working together to act on climate and strengthen our regional economy
Early interest from partners will show startups that Minnesota is serious about developing and deploying innovation. This will attract a high‐caliber slate of candidates to the accelerator cohort, with priority recruiting and selection given to startups led by people of color, women, and LGBTQIA+.
Visibility ‐ Elevate your organization’s commitment to clean energy

Innovator Network partners will be featured on the Grid Catalyst website, in digital media, and industry storytelling. Hosts will be featured in ongoing media and communications campaigns.

Opportunity – Introductions to emerging technology and promising entrepreneurs
Partners will be introduced to emerging businesses with innovative solutions that have been through a vetting process with technical and financial advisors. This creates an opportunity for investment, collaboration, and customizing solutions to meet your unique climate and clean energy needs.

Exploring the Partner Commitment

Grid Catalyst is seeking early‐stage partners who are interested in being part of our Innovators Network, with the opportunity to be matched with an emerging business for showcase demonstrations in 2022. Partners must have:

  • A commitment to initiatives that reduce carbon and address northern climate energy challenges.
  • The ability to host a project within your facilities, operations, or other controlled and available site.
  • Or the ability to assist with Grid Catalyst’s efforts to secure demonstration sites and partners.

Pledging interest in the Innovators Network does not obligate any organization or individual to host a demonstration project or work directly with any cohort member of the accelerator. This is a non‐ binding commitment to help our initiative build momentum and highlight the immense capacity and interest of clean energy partners in Minnesota. There is also no financial obligation to the accelerator or the demonstration projects; however, there are sponsorship opportunities available for those interested.

Clean energy accelerator

What's Next - Cohort and Demonstration Selection Process

The application for the startup cohort opens this September. In the coming months, our team will work closely with the Innovators Network to identify the highest potential technologies and solutions that could be demonstrated at partner sites. This information will be used to refine the selection criteria for the startup application and screening process.

The team will then begin a matchmaking process to pair hosts with the demonstration partner that best fits their value proposition.

The highest‐potential demonstration partners will be finalized by the end of the year and work will begin to map out the implementation for each project, including more detailed plans for agreements, permitting, financing, and monitoring parameters.

August

Launch Innovators Network Recruit Startups

October

Application Process Opens for Inaugural Cohort

November

Demonstration Partner Matchmaking Cohort Selection

December

Cohort Convenes Due Diligence for Demonstration Projects

Q1 2022

Planning & Early Implementation of Demonstration

Q2 2022

Demonstration Data Collection & Performance Verification

For more information, contact Nina Axelson: nina@gridcatalyst.org or (612) 695-1288.