Foundation of the month: Litona

Sandra Schöttelndreier
Founder of the month

What does your company stand for?

Litona stands for high-quality, environmentally friendly and yet affordable energy storage systems.

Where and how did you get the brilliant idea to found the company?

In 2021, we were working on sodium-ion batteries in a well-known battery research laboratory in Canada. However, we realised that there were hardly any chemicals and (energy storage) materials available for research on these batteries. We therefore decided to produce them ourselves on a large scale.

How did the founding team come together?

The founding team was working at the same time in a battery research laboratory in Canada on a research project to investigate the self-discharge of battery cells. The project was very successful and the collaboration was excellent, so there was great interest in continuing to work together in the future.

Where do you see the hurdles in the start-up process? Where did you get support?

We had to decide whether to apply for an Exist grant or set up directly as a limited company. We decided in favour of the latter, as the former would have cost us time. We talked to various friends and acquaintances who were more familiar with the start-up world than we were.

What was one of your biggest challenges during the start-up phase?

Bureaucracy is a major hurdle and can significantly delay the hoped-for product launch date. The high initial investment is also a challenge that almost every deep tech start-up faces. It helps to apply pressure and seek advice from people who have already successfully travelled this path.

Has anything changed for you since the formal foundation? And if so, what?

We can now officially sell our products!

What qualities do you think a founder should have?

Courage, a willingness to take risks, enthusiasm and especially for deep tech start-ups: technical understanding!

Question for our start-up community: Do you have any practical tips for other young company founders?

Practise your pitch as often as possible, present it to others (e.g. investors) and learn from it how you can formulate your business idea so that others understand it and recognise its potential.

Question for our start-up community: From today’s perspective, what would you perhaps do/approach differently?

We are still a bit too young to answer this question. We think we’re on the right track so far.

What are your plans for the future? What are your next big milestones?

We are currently working on setting up our first own labs and scaling up our product. If we can prove upscaling, nothing stands in the way of building a large pilot plant.

Thank you for answering the questions!


As always, you can also listen to the episode in our start-up podcast on Spotify and get to know the founders of Litona better.

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