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Case Study

Biopower Solutions- David Rochaya

Hone Program 2022

1 May 2022

Introduction

With an increase in cost of goods and a move to greener energy, David Rochaya developed a process to convert farm biowaste into high quality green hydrogen – creating a green energy source that can be used on farm for heavy machinery or onsold to energy providers looking to move away from fossil fuels. David’s focus is on grain farmers where he observed a large amount of waste that required paid disposal – seeing this as an opportunity to provide additional income to grain farmers, David started to investigate the interest from this industry.

David is an engineer located in Queensland and holds a PhD in Combustion Engineering. He has recently upskilled with a certification in financial modelling as he investigates the commercial viability of his business BioPower Solutions. He met his co-founder Marcus Love through the engineering network. Marcus has complementary skills in cost and control engineering.

Hone Journey

David undertook the Hatch program where he was looking to validate his early-stage idea. David gained a deeper understanding of grain farmers and their requirements for technology adoption and maintenance on farms. Through David’s customer interviews and networks created during the program he identified a Western Australian grain cooperative who were interested in partnering for the first trial of the BioPower Solution. David used the Hatch program to learn more about possible waste inputs, cost of manufacturing and different components and progressed his knowledge of the value chain required to complete the process of green hydrogen production.

David has excelled during the Hone program. David’s deeper understanding of his business framework using the business model canvas allowed him to identify gaps in team skills particularly around sales and marketing which he plans to fill by bringing onboard a female co-founder. He is formalising his partnership agreement with his current co-founder and is looking to register his business and invest in his website.

David has received confirmation of a partnership with CBH in Perth, a large potential customer who have indicated are interested in funding his initial trial to a cost of approximately $200,000. David is working through the delivery options of the modular hardware, investigating whether it could be flatpacked for distribution and the costs and methods of delivery associated.

David’s key learnings during the Hone program were around being able to communicate his key value proposition after in-depth customer analysis and discussions with his Farmers2Founders mentor. David is a keen learner and listener and his openness to feedback has seen his pitching skills and business model progress significantly. The game plan helped David breakdown the key steps required to reach his 6-month goal being a functioning prototype and will be looking to use his validated results to initiate further customer discussions. His key focus areas of the game plan were developing a go to market, social media and lead onboarding strategy. David will also be submitting his patent application in the next 6 months.

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Thanks to the Hone Program I managed to have clear, specific 6 months goals to achieve and a clear pathway towards the sustainable development of my business venture.

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Biopower Solutions- David Rochaya

Program Partners

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