Why we invested in Atmio

Words by:
Kamil Mieczakowski & Max Eichler

Notion Capital leads €5m Seed investment into Atmio.

At Notion, we have successfully partnered with many vertical SaaS businesses, but none quite like this. Atmio is on a mission to become a true operations system for clean natural gas operations, by integrating their own methane detection devices and 3rd party hardware into one easy-to-use & fully compliant OS.

Two sides: Methane as an energy source and a potent greenhouse gas 

Methane is one of the most prevalent energy sources in Europe, which requires vast infrastructure in almost every country, city, and town - 200,000km of transmission pipelines and over 2 million km of distribution networks in Europe alone.

This vast infrastructure operates under high pressure and experiences regular maintenance or equipment issues, causing leaks. An estimated 3% of global natural gas production escapes into the atmosphere annually resulting in tens of billions of dollars in economic loss and significant climate impact. Natural gas mainly consists of methane, which is 85 times more potent than CO2 at trapping heat over 20 years and 32 times over 100 years, making it a major driver of near-term warming. About 30% of current global warming is due to human-related methane emissions.

This has caused most developed countries to take regulatory action. This year, a new EU regulation to mitigate methane emissions came into force, requiring all operators of natural gas infrastructure to meticulously identify, repair, and report leaks in their infrastructure (LDAR = leak detection and repair). From 2027 onwards, imports of crude oil, natural gas, or coal from outside of Europe are subject to the same monitoring, reporting, and verification measures at the producer level.

Historically, natural gas operators have largely relied on annual visits by service providers or other manual methods to identify major leaks in their infrastructure. The new regulatory framework requires more frequent inspections with faster repair cycles and more extensive measurements, making it economically unfeasible to continue to operate under the status quo, risking fines and loss of product.

A modern OS for a dusty industry

Atmio offers a holistic operating system, combined with their own state-of-the-art, hand-held methane detection device and stationary monitors. This enables natural gas operators to easily (1) identify leaks in their infrastructure with different detection methods, (2) fix leaks and manage the repair process, as well as (3) report the results to management, shareholders, and regulators at the push of a button. They can easily insource the LDAR capability and become compliant with the extensive regulation simply by using Atmio.

Atmio further integrates third party hardware, such as drones, satellites, stationary cameras and other vehicles, to become a true system of record for industrial emissions in Europe and beyond, with room to expand into additional emission sources such as flaring, biogas, coal, and venting. While electrification may reduce the use of methane, similar substances, such as hydrogen and biogas are growing quickly with similar measurement requirements on the horizon. We’re excited about Atmio’s opportunity as an enabler to make the use of these gases sustainable at scale.

Atmio is already working with several natural gas storage companies and large distribution system operators to build a platform and capabilities which are perfectly suited to their needs. Operators must establish leak detection and repair (LDAR) programs and start conducting surveys within 12 months from the entry into force for new assets, and within 24 months for existing assets - the timing for Atmio to capture a significant share of the market couldn’t be much better.

The perfect team

The team has remarkable founder-market fit. Matthias Schmittmann (CEO) previously founded Bentekk, a startup for measuring toxic gases in industrial environments, which is still widely used in the oil and gas industry to this day. He scaled the company globally and exited to Dräger. Marius Krüger (COO) brings deep operational expertise, scaling his last venture to €10m+ revenue and has previous experience in the natural gas industry, with his 4 years at BP. Fabian Ihl (CTO) most recently worked at another iconic software/hardware startup, RobCo, as Director of Product Development. He has almost two decades of developer experience.

Atmio has a bright future ahead with a stellar team, solid customer ROI, and regulatory tailwind. We’re excited to be part of the journey, as they bring a much needed step change in innovation to a crucial piece of real-world infrastructure in Europe and beyond.

Why Notion? A note from the founders…

"We chose Notion because they quickly immersed themselves in our complex topic, technology and market with impressive speed and detail. Their deep knowledge of startups, combined with the expertise of their investment and platform teams, made us confident in their ability to support our growth and success.” Matthias Schmittmann, CEO

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