Meet the Entrepreneur | Kindow
Sam Kin is the entrepreneur behind Kindow and founder of SolarWings, of which Kindow is a spin-off. As a former energy consultant at Ecofys, Aldus Bouwinnovatie and Stichting Living Daylights, Sam is specialised in sunlight management in large buildings. He talks about his idea and how it came about, read his story now!
Kindow are crowdfunding now on Symbid, view their full pitch and invest here.
When did you decide to become an entrepreneur, and why?
Directly after finishing my Masters in Energy Science. I figured that for me it would be the most effective way to accomplish real impact.
What kind of entrepreneur are you?
I want to have positive impact on the environment and our planet. Sounds cheesy, but at the end of the day that is what I want to accomplish. I see great potential in harnessing the suns’ energy, it’s clean, it’s free and it’s abundant. I’m not talking about solar panels only, for buildings one should see this in a broader perspective, buildings can harness daylight and solar heat. Two factors that are also very important for our well-being. The challenge is to cooperate with the sun as much as possible. I think their lies a big future for architecture and products that can achieve this. I do believe however that the only way to make impact is thru products that everybody wants to buy, the economics should work out. As an entrepreneur success can be measured in different ways but for your company it can only be measured in money. I try to combine these two believes in my ventures.
I can see the bigger picture and try to translate that into real products. I can be very persistent in that as well, a lot of people would have stopped where I decided to go on and try again in another way. Furthermore, I’m able to see my shortcomings and try to organize my own backtalk. I consider myself a very reasonable guy, always looking for shared value not conflict. Because of my passion and personality I have been able to attract the right people to my cause
In a few sentences, introduce your company
Kindow develops and commercializes blind automation systems. We add intelligence to regular blind systems so that they will anticipate on the incoming solar radiation better and optimize comfort and energy efficiency. Starting with the vertical blind. The vertical blind has gone out of fashion, because nobody uses them right and they always look messy. But in fact, it is a very good solution to control light levels inside, roller blinds or pleated blinds are just open or close, while vertical blinds can be tuned to create the right light intensity. We have developed a vertical blind automation that will put the vertical blind back on the map. The kindow blind rail lets the blinds follow the sun automatically. So they ar always in the right position, preventing glare from the direct sunlight. At the same time they open during the day, allowing more daylight and view. So ease and comfort will improve and better control of sunlight can also result into substantial energy savings, up to 25%.
Describe the past, present and future of your company
Kindow was incorporated just this month. It is a spin-off of SolarSwing. SolarSwing was incorporated in 2013. First we focussed on a solar tracking system for solar panels but in our quest for a commercial product we figured solar tracking would be a nice feature for shading systems and the idea for Kindow was born. We focussed our effort on building the prototype and realizing the first projects. In 2015 The MUL BV project in Gouda was installed. Here we put 18 prototypes of our rail systems and combined them with special transparent blinds to
allow for even more daylight. Now we have translated our prototype into a commercial product that can be mass produced. Our system is ready for the market.
Solar tracking is a primary feature of the Kindow rail. But we want to keep adding functionalty to our control, maximizing the potential of the system. We already have prototypes that are powered by a small solar panel and can be controlled
wireless. we want to upgrade our control on the basis of multiple input parameters, like irradiance, sun position, weather type, weather forecast, occupancy, user location, etc. In that way the Kindow control can be refined, truly optimizing energy efficiency and user comfort for buildings. Furthermore, we have started with verticals but our technology can also be used for horizontals, louvres and shutters, we have just begun!
What is the unique value of the products/services you offer?
- Solar tracking is unique. With Kindow this will happen automatically, every day again. The blind are always positioned the right way.People can just leave them as they are. Existing motorized systems are not intelligent they can only be opened/closed by a person who still has to push the buttons. The automatic control of the Kindow also enables true energy savings on lighting and cooling.
- 40% cheaper than existing motorized rail systems
- Unique knowledge and know-how. We have an experienced and skilled team withthe necessary technical and commercial background. Furthermore, being a spin-off of SolarSwing, Kindow has access to unique knowledge on smart solar control. SolarSwing is leading in this field and executes two other projects that are relevant to Kindow as well. Projects in cooperation with leading knowledge institutes and companies; the ‘FourC project’ in cooperation with the blind manufacturer Verosol and the Technical University of Eindhoven, en the Wellsun project in cooperation with Wellsun and the Radboud University of Nijmegen.
Raise the necessary amount of money to be able to push the Kindow blind rail into the market and start realizing revenues.
Crowdfunding offers a great combination of funding, exposure and creates momentum around our venture. An attractive aspect is also the limited timeframe of the campaign. In contrary to other investing trajectories that can take forever, we know the timeline.
Give 3 key reasons to invest in your company?
- Kindow will realize direct impact on the comfort and energy efficiency of buildings
- Kindow offers highly scalable product solutions
- The Kindow rail is not an idea, the product is ready. We have invested serious money and time, prototypes have been developed and pilot projects have been realised. Many hurdles have been taken in this process and we have proven to be persistant in our cause, now it’s time to take the next step.
Convinced of the product? View their full pitch and invest here.