The Business of Open Source

Nicolas Höning is the Co-Founder and CEO of Seita, an open-source energy optimization and digitalization company. Nicolas took an unconventional path to founding an open-source startup, and throughout this episode he describes how creating a greener world through open-source software is more than a business endeavor for him - it’s a personal mission. Nicolas describes perfectly the challenges that open-source founders face, and is transparent on the decisions he’s still weighing when it comes to choosing an open-source product model and the benefits and challenges of being a boot-strapped startup. I was particularly interested to learn how his company’s project, V2G Liberty, helps individuals who are looking for a greener way to optimize the charging of their electric vehicles, and why Nicolas doesn’t market his other products to individual users.

  • I introduce Nicolas Höning, who is the Co-Founder and CEO of Seita, an open-source energy digitalization company (01:00)
  • Nicolas describes the unique nature of building open-source software for the energy sector (03:34)
  • How Nicolas wound up developing software for the energy sector (05:30)
  • The mission at Seita and how it’s also reflected personally in Nicolas’ life mission (06:57)
  • Why open-source was an important part of the delivery of Seita’s mission (09:25)
  • Nicolas describes the challenge of identifying his users and customers (11:28)
  • Why Nicolas doesn’t focus on individual users (14:36)
  • Nicolas describes his project V2G Liberty, which helps individuals optimize their EV charging (17:42)
  • How Nicolas initially funded Seita and his commercial strategy moving forward (19:51)
  • Why Seita launched a commercial product before launching an open-source project (23:30)
  • What Nicolas has been considering when deciding between an open core and open source product model (26:35)
  • The biggest challenge Nicolas is facing right now at Seita (32:43)
  • How listeners can connect with Nicolas and learn more (33:57)


What is The Business of Open Source?

Whether you're a founder of an open source startup, an open source maintainer or just an open source enthusiast, join host Emily Omier as she talks to the people who work at the intersection of open source and business, from startup founders to leaders of open source giants and all the people who help open source startups grow.