Heliocentris Energy Solutions, which filed for bankruptcy in late 2016, will be no more, although its expertise will live on. The manufacturing and the education division were sold to different companies, but many employees who worked in Berlin lost their job.
The business founded in Berlin, Germany, announced on Jan. 12, 2017, that important assets of the Heliocentris Group had been sold to a subsidiary of Odeh Asalem Automation Systems from Dubai. The stake in Heliocentris Italy and important assets of Heliocentris Fuel Cell Solutions and Heliocentris Industry now belong to the Arab technology provider. With approval by the creditor’s committees, Acta S.p.A. based in Pisa will be renamed ODASCO – Heliocentris Italy S.r.l., whereas FutureE Fuel Cell Solutions GmbH based in Wendlingen, Germany, will become ODASCO – Heliocentris Fuel Cell Solutions GmbH and Munich-based P21 will be known as ODASCO – Heliocentris Industry GmbH.
However, while many working at the business’s southern German locations can keep their job, the employees at the headquarters in Berlin-Adlershof will not be so lucky. The former had even posted new job offers for industry specialists since February, but the latter will be closed down entirely. Assets and shares in what used to be Acta and were held by the Berlin location have been retransferred from the German Spree region to Italy, so that most of the work in the technology center in Berlin ended recently. This means that a few tens employees lost their jobs.
The education division, Heliocentris Academia, was incorporated into the Horizon Educational Group from Singapore on Feb. 1, 2017, which means that important assets and some of the jobs have remained. However, these jobs are far from secure, as it seems unlikely that the Asian corporation will maintain a large presence in Berlin.
Mark-Uwe Oßwald, formerly managing director of FutureE, has meanwhile returned to Stuttgart after an almost two-year stint at the Italian subsidiary of Heliocentris. It has been reported that the UPS system for the BOS locations could be built by the new German business after all, as the NIP tender had been adapted to reflect the change in circumstances. No one knows how the story will continue in Italy, particularly in light of the fresh capital Heliocentris had received from Inabata Europe in 2015. The subsidiary of Japanese trading corporation Inabata & Co had entered into a strategic partnership with the Berlin-based business to receive the exclusive distribution rights for all Heliocentris products sold on the Japanese market for five years.
What is certain, however, is that former CFO Sabine Kauper left Heliocentris on Jan. 31, 2017, and that company founder Henrik Colell continues at the helm of Home Power Solutions. Colell had founded HPS at the end of 2014 in Wildau together with Zeyad Abul-Ella, the brother of Heliocentris CEO Ayad Abul-Ella. During the ISH and Hannover Messe, HPS showcased its new Picea system (see New Priorities in Hanover) for grid-independent power supply of buildings through solar energy and hydrogen. Pilots of the system are being tested; more details should become available after the Hanover trade show. Colell has also kept his position as spokesperson of Clean Power Net. HPS joined the business network during the CPN general assembly in mid-March 2017.
Ayad Abul-Ella, formerly CEO of Heliocentris Energy Solutions, will have left the company by now.