Johanna Ludwig (Founder, CTO), Matan Beery (Founder, CEO), and Lucas León (Founder, CFO) © Nils Lucas
What inspired you to found your startup?
All three founders are purpose-driven people and we want to change the world for the better. Maximising our positive impact in the environment and society was only possible by putting many talented people to work towards the same vision – founding a startup was a consequence of that goal.
How do you define success for yourself and your company?
Our success is our company’s. Every step towards a more sustainable future is a success: making the industry use a litre less of water, discharge a litre less to a river, generate 1g less of CO2, generate 1g less of by-products.
Is there anything you’d do differently if you could do it again?
Many things, all the time. But we don’t drive looking in the rearview mirror, we look forward and try to improve every day in order to make less mistakes and learn faster to achieve our goals quicker.
What problem does your product solve?
Our goal is to enable the industry to reuse their (waste) water, something they are not able to do today because conventional technologies are too costly or too little reliable. We provide them with a robust solution and an economic incentive to become more sustainable.
Where do you see your company in 1/5/10 years?
We see our technology as an global go-to solution for the markets that we are addressing today and many more in the industrial space!
How are you different?
Our technology uses 90% percent less energy than the competition and has higher reliability and overall 50% lower operating costs.
How often does your product/service show up in a user’s day or week?
Doesn’t apply to us.
Impact: how are you doing good and building a better future?
The only way to achieve a sustainable freshwater supply is by wastewater reuse, which requires increasing amounts of energy. At the same time, energy generation and storage also requires increasing amounts of water. This mega trend, the Water-Energy Nexus, poses one of the main challenges of the 21st century. We believe that making wastewater reuse affordable and sustainable is essential to the future development of mankind in terms of economy, environment and society.
How has the startup scene in Berlin changed?
I would say in the last years the hype has decreased to a more healthy level. Probably due to the spread of the realisation that founding a company is not a flowery road, but a rollercoaster and: you most likely won’t get rich, you will not be your own boss (the customers and investors will keep you up 24/7).
What are the pros and cons of launching your startup from Berlin?
Pros: the city, talent pool, startup/VC ecosystem
Cons: never-ending cold grey winters
Akvola Technologies was featured in “The Hundert Vol. 10 – Startups of Berlin“, October 2017.