June 4, 2024

Volta Trucks founder raises €3.6m for new e-truck startup Decade Energy

The new company will provide a software platform to help businesses electrify their truck fleets

Decade Energy, a Paris-based startup founded by a team of former operators from Swedish electric van manufacturer Volta Trucks, has raised a €3.6m equity seed round to create a software platform that manages truck operators’ transitions to electric fleets.

The new company was launched by Carl Magnus Norden, who founded Volta Trucks in 2019, together with Casper Norden, Alexandre Cleret, Alejandro Ortega Peniche and Mariela Atanasova, who have also come from the Swedish company’s ranks.

Volta Trucks filed for bankruptcy at the end of 2023, partly blaming the collapse of its battery supplier, a US company called Proterra. Last December, a New York-based hedge fund, Luxor Capital Group, purchased Volta outright. 


Norden and his cofounders set up Decade Energy at the start of 2024. The startup’s seed round was led by German VC Ananda Impact Ventures and Lithuanian net-zero investor Contrarian Ventures.

Electrification software

Unlike Volta Trucks, which manufactures physical e-vans, Decade Energy is a software company. It will offer customers — logistics companies that operate trucks, like retailers or transporters — the tools to plan and carry out the electrification of their fleets. 

The platform is intended to support managers in individual distribution depots as they switch to electrified fleets — helping them manage processes like getting a grid connection and deploying charging infrastructure. 

Norden says that this switch is hugely complex at the depot level, with different needs depending on the size of the fleet, the type of routes taken by the trucks and at what time of the day — as well as the local energy mix and cost of electricity.   

“To me, this is the biggest bottleneck for electrification,” he says. “It is not the availability of electric trucks anymore, it is just getting electricity to the right place.”

Using data about existing company processes, fleet characteristics and local energy grid properties, Norden says that Decade Energy’s platform will draw up an electrification plan on a depot-by-depot basis, focusing on increasing efficiencies and cutting costs.

It will also support fleet management once deployed, for example by adapting truck charging schedules to periods where energy costs are lower. 

The company will focus on European markets, starting with France, Germany and Sweden — and is already in talks with potential customers. 

“We are obviously going back to people we already know in the industry from the Volta days,” says Norden.


Norden says that he identified the need to increase efficiencies in the planning of truck electrification during the time that he spent building Volta Trucks.


“When I spoke to customers, I saw they didn’t know much about how to run electric trucks,” he says.

In 2021, Volta launched a Truck-as-a-Service (TaaS) offering to provide electrification support for its customers — a proposal that includes supporting the deployment of charging infrastructure, as well as truck insurance and financing products, maintenance and training.

Volta’s TaaS activities will be discontinued, says Norden, and Decade Energy will focus on expanding the electrification support services previously offered by the Swedish company. Decade Energy’s founders have all come from Volta’s TaaS department.

“We always thought that over time, we would separate that activity,” says Norden. “That was accelerated by Volta’s bankruptcy.”

“We thought: ‘Let’s separate this out, take a more holistic view and accelerate the transition.’” 

Decade Energy will provide services to buyers of Voltas e-vehicles as well as to users of other electric truck brands.

‘Masters of our destiny’

The Volta alums' decision to launch a software company comes during a tough time for electric vehicle manufacturers. Like Norden’s former startup, the UK’s e-van startup Arrival recently filed for administration, while e-truck manufacturer Tevva is also looking for a rescue buyer. 

On the other hand, one of the most successful companies in the sector, Sweden-based Einride, does not manufacture its vehicles but instead applies its software to third-party hardware makers. 

Launching a software-first business model was a conscious choice for Norden and his cofounders. With startups currently struggling to raise funds amid a tough economic context, the founder says that it has become much harder to convince investors to back businesses that have long development cycles.

“We raised over $400m with Volta, and with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), you can easily go to $1bn before you start delivering trucks and get paid for them,” says Norden. “Betting on this is much harder today than it was five years ago.”

“We will have the opportunity to master our destiny better with this business model than if we need to raise $800m before we start making any revenue.”

Decade Energy’s five founders will soon be joined by two new recruits, and Norden says that it is planning to hire a team of 20 before the end of the year.

Daphné Leprince-Ringuet

Daphné Leprince-Ringuet is a reporter for Sifted based in Paris and covering French tech. You can find her on X and LinkedIn