4 startups selected into Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), is excited to partner with Wells Fargo on the Innovation Incubator (IN2) program. Company’s with early stage commercial buildings technologies who are accepted into the IN2 program will have the opportunity to utilize the unique facilities and expertise at NREL to advance their technology forward into the marketplace.

The following is a guest blog by Ashley Grosh, Project Manager for Wells Fargo Environmental Affairs, on the announcement of the Round 1 companies selected into the IN2 program. 

In 2014, we launched the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator or IN2, a five-year, $10 million program to foster innovative environmental technologies. This program, funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation and co-administered by NREL, creates a new platform to foster and accelerate early stage commercial buildings technologies that can provide scalable solutions to reduce the energy impact of buildings. Companies will be incubated at NREL, working with expert researchers to advance their technology- with the hope of eventually beta testing within the walls of Wells Fargo.

Since announcing this program, executives from Wells Fargo and our program stakeholders, including a technical buildings research team at NREL and an external team of industry experts, have been evaluating a pool of more than 80 referred technologies and have made final selections for the first round of funding for the program. The review & selection process has been very exciting and competitive, as applicants were measured on criteria such as overall energy impact, technical merit, marketability, scalability, and much more.  We are very optimistic about the first round of companies that have been selected, and the potential positive and scalable impact these technologies could provide the marketplace.

It is my pleasure to now share with you the four technologies that were selected into round one of the program. These companies will receive the following:

  • Up to $250,000 in non-dilutive funding
  • Access to NREL’s world class facility and team of experts that will help them with technical assistance and milestone achievements
  • Access to Wells Fargo leaders and mentors and an opportunity to beta test their technologies within the walls at Wells Fargo for further technology validation.


Round One Companies: 

  1. Energy Storage Systems (Portland) is developing an advanced flow battery that utilizes earth-abundant iron as its energy storage medium. See how these batteries are an energy efficient solution here: https://youtu.be/TjtHCLaIuqY 
  2. LiquidCool Solutions (Rochester, Minn. ) is developing two forms of total immersion electronics cooling technology for large-scale data centers:  See how LiquidCool Solutions is reducing energy at this link: https://youtu.be/G8OLyVtB2GM
  3. SmarterShade  (Chicago) delivers on the promise of smart glass: significant energy savings, glare reduction and enhanced privacy impact – all in a seamless user-controlled shading interface that lasts 4-5 times longer than blinds and shades.
  4. WattStick Systems (San Francisco) is developing peel-and-stick electricity metering technology that can be safely and easily installed by nontechnical staff.

Please join us in congratulating these companies! We hope you continue to follow us on the IN2journey.

– Ashley Grosh

For more information, check out the press release announcing the 4 selected companies.


4 thoughts on “4 startups selected into Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator

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