How startups are driving the energy transition

Start-ups are often the drivers of innovation. This also applies to the energy transition. To leverage this potential, dena, the German Energy Agency, launched the "Start Up Energy Transition" program, or SET for short, several years ago. The program is supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection and the World Energy Council. There are currently numerous start-ups in the field of the new energy world. Why are they so important for a successful transformation? In which areas are they particularly dominant? And how can they help global corporations become even more committed to a renewable, decentralized and digital energy world? Andreas Kuhlmann, managing director of dena, reveals this and more.


  • 0.55: Why are start-ups in particular so important for a successful energy transition?
  • 6.56: Which sectors do the start-ups come from and in which areas are there still follow-up needs?
  • 9.47: Digitalization: What trends and new digital solutions, technologies and products can we currently marvel at here?
  • 12.20: Should start-ups get even more support from politics in the future?

Published: June 23, 2022

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About Andreas Kuhlmann and dena

Since July 2015, Andreas Kuhlmann has been Chairman of dena's Executive Board and founder of the global startup network SET. The German Energy Agency (dena) sees itself as an independent driver and pioneer of the energy transition - both nationally and internationally. Through its work, dena aims to contribute to its success and to global climate protection.

Kuhlmann studied physics with a minor in economics at the universities of Bonn, Heidelberg and Corvallis (USA). He began his professional career in 1995 at the Institute for Environmental Physics at the Ruprecht Karls University in Heidelberg, where he worked primarily on the carbon cycle. This was followed by various positions in the political arena, including the European Parliament, the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), the German Bundestag, the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, and the German Embassy in Stockholm. In 2010, Andreas Kuhlmann joined the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) and took over the policy and economics departments as head of the Strategy and Policy Division. He was responsible for the strategic and political development of BDEW as well as the dialog with politics, business and civil society.

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