158: Know before you go, MIRECweek Mexico City

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If you’re familiar at all with the Mexico market, then you’ll have heard of the Mexico International Renewable Energy Congress, now know universally as Mirec. Like many of you, I’ll be headed to Mexico City next week to participate in what is essentially the SPI of Mexico, so thought it a good time to tell you both about the conference and a bit about why you might be interested in Mexico’s market at all. Today’s guests are Jamie Dowswell - Dir. of Programs for MIRECweek, Jonathan Pinzon - Dir. of Gov’t Affairs for Invenergy in Mexico, and Carlos Abad - Head of Latam Markets for Chint Power Systems.

If you’ve listened to previous Know Before You Go episodes (last year’s Intersolar & SPI, then you know we highlight both what the show is about, but also how you can optimize your time on the show floor and in the conference sessions. Today we spend much less time on tips & tricks for showing up well at the conference, so if you are indeed interested in those, I strongly recommend you go back to the archives and listen to the SPI episode from September which is chock full of tidbits on how to make the most of any tradeshow.

Resources:

SPI: Know Before You Go Episode

Jamie Dowswell - LinkedIn

Jonathan Pinzon - LinkedIn

Carlos Abad - LinkedIn

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

157: Devin Welch, Sun Tribe Solar

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Today’s entrepreneur is at the helm of a rocket ship of expansion in a market that has silently been on a phenomenal growth curve. Devin Welch is Chief Strategy & Development officer at Sun Tribe Solar a relatively young but extremely impressive bunch of corporate renegades taking the Virginia market by storm. I recently had the chance to visit them in their new expanded Charlottesville VA office and tried to capture the essence of the culture at the heart of this fast-paced market leader. I hope you’ll stick around to hear how Devin and his partners are building a Tribe and a profitable business in a market many might not consider a hotbed for solar or innovation. You’ll be surprised by both when you sit in with me on this discussion.

Resources:

Connect with Devin on LinkedIn

Check out the Sun Tribe Solar Website

Books Mentioned:

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

156: Impact Positive - Sandra Kwak, Cleantech Woman of the Year

Today’s entrepreneur was recently announced as the EarthX Cleantech Woman of the Year! She’s a serial entrepreneur and one really smart and savvy leader. Sandra Kwak founded 10 Power to provide light and hope to the people of Haiti and beyond, and today we dig deep into the details on the who, what, when where and why of the Impact she seeks to make.

This is instalment two of our Impact Positive series with Jon Bonanno.

Resources:

Connect with Sandra on LinkedIn

Echoing Green - Sandra Kwak: 2017 Climate Fellow, Founder of 10Power

Sandra’s TEDx Talk:

10Power’s Website & Team

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus



155: Mexico Hedge Fund Artha Capital Betting Big on Solar with Prana

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Welcome to Episode 155 of SunCast!

Jose Jove is VP of Distributed Energy at Prana Power, one of the fastest growing and most well-capitalized clean energy developers in Mexico. Today I take a peek behind the curtain to hear how Jose feels about the current state of the solar union in Mexico.

Prana has been on a Nextera-esque buying spree of late, snapping up major DG portfolios and building a solid team. I wanted to learn more about the state of the solar union in Mexico directly from one of the major players, so Jose agreed to take some time with me. This is a complete departure in interview flow, questions, and direction from my typical episode, so I am very curious to hear what you think.

Next week, I’ll be at Solar Power Puerto Rico, and also hosting a 1-day think tank on Monday the 29th, you can learn more about that at www.attendprecharge.com.

Resources:

Check out the Prana Power website

Connect with Jose on LinkedIn

Connect with Prana Power on LinkedIn

Visit MIREC-Week

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

154: Jeff Wolfe, Solar Pioneer to E-Mobility Executive

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Welcome to Episode 154 of SunCast!

When I first started my solar company in 2006, one of the distributors I relied on was a smaller New England company called groSolar. Jeff Wolfe, was one of the smartest sales & marketing minds in the biz, and we’ve been friends for over a decade.

Over 18 yrs, groSolar deployed more than 150 megawatts (MW) (2,000 installations) of solar PV systems across the US. Jeff sold the RESI piece of the business to SolarCity in 2011, and the rest to EDF in 2016.

Today, we’re going to learn what Jeff’s been doing with his time since the exit. Hint - he didn’t retire…

Resources:

Connect with Jeff on LinkedIn

Follow Jeff on Twitter

Check out the Tritium website

Books Mentioned:

The Loyalty Effect: The Hidden Force Behind Growth, Profits, and Lasting Value Paperback – by Frederick F. Reichheld

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

153: New Energy Nexus, Jon Bonanno

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Welcome to Episode 153 of SunCast!

Opportunity Zones are all the buzz in investment circles, but few in the solar industry understand them or how they can be leveraged to finance deals. Jon Bonanno from New Energy Nexus has built an extensive repository of resources directed at helping you figure it out. We dive deep on the subject in today’s SunCast.

If you’re unfamiliar with Jon Bonanno, I encourage you to listen back a couple of weeks to Episodes 146 & 147 as he is my cohost for Impact Positive. He’s also a mentor, friend and savvy cleantech investor. Danny Kennedy at CalCEF believes so too and hired Jon to help build the New Energy Nexus. Not long ago, Jon explained to me what exactly he was working on, and I was left bewildered and befudled. I had to have him explain it to me again with the recorder going so I could avoid feeling silly for asking him to explain it another 5 times.

Don’t miss out on the upcoming Puerto Rico Event! To learn more about our 1-day Mastermind, check out www.attendprecharge.com

Resources:

Connect with Jon on LinkedIn

Check out the New Energy Nexus website

Check out the CalCEF website

Books Mentioned:

Winners Take All - Anand Giridharadas

This Changes Everything - Naomi Kline

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

152: PreCharge is Coming, Puerto Rico is on the Rise

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Welcome to Episode 152 of SunCast!

Today is a mini-sode with James Ellsmoor, specifically focused on an upcoming opportunity for us to spend some time in real life together really getting into the mechanics of improving your business and market penetration. Specifically, Puerto Rico and the broader Caribbean markets.

James Ellsmoor is the Director and co-founder of nonprofit Solar Head of State, which installed solar on the Office of the Prime Minister of Jamaica and Government House in Saint Lucia currently executing similar projects on 20 islands around the Pacific and the Caribbean

James is a key figure in thought leadership around policy for island nations, and is a prolific contributor to Forbes on these topics.

PreCharge brings together industry leaders to focus on overcoming the market's biggest obstacles and collectively generate solutions. By getting industry leaders together in one room we will facilitate a discussion around some of the most compelling issues in the market.

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Resources:

Sign up for PreCharge now! - Code: PRECHARGE10

Catch the PreCharge Webinar here

James Ellsmoor’s Forbes Article: Puerto Rico Has Just Passed Its Own Green New Deal

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

151: Puerto Rico's Green New Deal with PJ Wilson

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Welcome to Episode 151 of SunCast!

PJ Wilson is the Founder and President of the Solar + Energy Storage Association of Puerto Rico (SESA). SESA successfully advocated for what some are calling PR’s New Green Deal, Senate Bill 1121 which will help Puerto Rico reach the ambitious requirement of 100% renewables by 2050.

In February 2018 in response to the blackout caused by Hurricane Maria, PJ moved to Puerto Rico & despite his declaration of retirement from organizing wound up founding SESA. Now with 18 member companies representing the majority of the solar and battery storage market on the island.  SESA is squarely focused on growing the solar + storage industry through clean energy policy creation and implementation, direct dialogue with PREPA, and coalition building to address challenges along the way.

PJ and SESA will be hosting the Solar Power Puerto Rico event on the 30th of April and the 1st of May. Listeners of SunCast can get a discount with the following code P10PR19NJ

Register Now

Resources

Connect with PJ on LinkedIn

Check out the SESA-PR Website

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus



150: What Tetris Did For Energy Storage, with Henk Rogers

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Welcome to Episode 150 of SunCast!

Today’s entrepreneur is Henk Rogers, one of the world’s leading advocates and activists for weaning humankind from fossil fuels.

His efforts through Blue Planet Foundation have helped pave the way for Hawaii’s 100% renewable energy commitment by 2045.

Through Blue Planet Energy, Henk has led development of a leading energy storage system advancing safety, reliability and energy output of battery systems.

Henk Rogers (Left), Nico Johnson (Right)

Henk Rogers (Left), Nico Johnson (Right)

Prior to focusing his talents on environmental protection, Henk is also known as the father of role-playing games in Japan, but what many mainstream enthusiasts recognize him for is Tetris. That’s right, the game of TETROMINOES that sold more than 35Million units on Nintendo Gameboy alone, and is the paid downloaded game of all time

We dive into how Henk has leveraged his software development and licensing savvy to tackle what he considers the greatest problem of our time - Climate Change. And we’ll hear Henk’s reasoning for deciding to build Blue Planet Energy around the Lithium Iron phosphate battery chemistry and how he negotiated the rights to that technology play as well.

Henk’s ‘100% by 2045’ Shoes

Henk’s ‘100% by 2045’ Shoes

Resources:

Follow Henk on Twitter

Connect with Henk on LinkedIn

Check out the Blue Planet Energy Facebook

PBS Hawaii CEO of the Year for 2015 - YouTube

Stranger in a Strange Land - Robert A. Heinlein

1Q84 - Haruki Murakami

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus


149: Bernadette del Chiaro, CALSSA’s Solar & Climate Policy Maven

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Welcome to Episode 149 of SunCast!

Today’s Guest doesn’t consider herself an entrepreneur, but after listening in I’m sure you’ll agree most corporate leaders and startup founders alike can learn a lot from Bernadette del Chiaro. Her accolades are many, and we discuss them in the episode, but I thought it would be great to round out this Women’s History Month with someone who has made an indelible mark on the solar and energy sector through her advocacy and political organizing.

Bernadette has been a leading voice in California clean energy & climate advocacy for 2 decades. Now, as the Executive Director of the California Solar and Storage Association, she is directly responsible for providing a voice and platform for over 500 member solar companies. Hear how she helped create the California legislative initiatives we now credit as a huge impetus to the current solar boom in the US! She’s now instrumental in driving forward energy storage initiatives like SB700, dubbed the Million Solar Roofs of Energy Storage. We dig into these and more, including Bernadette’s advice on how You can be more active in lobbying and policy right where you live.

Also, next week we’ll hit episode 150! Woot! I’ve got an amazing guest lined up, Mr. Henk Rogers, who is the founder of Tetris, Inc, yes, the popular game you no doubt have spent hours playing. He also has an energy storage startup, and it’s a fascinating story, so stay tuned.

Remember you can always find me onTwitter,LinkedIn oremail and you can get the resources and learn more about how to find Rick or his recommendations on theSunCast Blog.

Resources:

Connect with Bernadette on LinkedIn

Follow Bernadette on Twitter

Follow CALSSA on Twitter

CA Solar & Storage Associations Website

The Million Solar Roofs of Energy Storage Passed California Assembly!

California's Solar Success Story: How the Million Solar Roofs Initiative Transformed the State's Energy Landscape

2002 Vote Solar Summary of California Solar Initiative SB1 Fact Sheet

Gov. Schwarzenegger Announces Million Solar Roofs (SB1 & SB1017)

Books Mentioned:

Angle of Repose by Stegner Wallace

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

148: How to SimpliPhi Batteries, Catherine Von Burg

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Welcome to Episode 148, Solar Warrior!

Today’s entrepreneur has spent the better part of a decade following a very inspiring mission to provide clean electricity and energy access to the world.

The medium is a company she cofounded called SimpliPhi Power, and Catherine Von Burg is an inspirational and thoughtful leader with an impressive track record. They have delivered Gigawatts of storage to the US DOD with ZERO defects in an era when battery startups fail year after year. Listen in to hear how she and her team have done it.  

Catherine Von Berg has leveraged her biomedical research and humanitarian background to grow, quite under the radar, one of the most interesting companies I’ve seen in the energy storage space, SimpliPhi Power. She is unorthodox and counter culture in many ways, and exemplifies the spirit of the women we are all honoring this Women’s History Month, but also the spirit of entrepreneurship and leadership that any company would want at the helm.

We had an amazing 2 hour discussion, most of which made it into today’s episode. If you’re a fan of longform, consider joining the SunCast Tribe where you can get the uncut version of this and many other epic conversations.

Resources:

Connect with Catherine on LinkedIn

Follow Catherine on Twitter

Check out the SimpliPhi Power website

Catherine at WCS Talks

Books Mentioned:

The Autobiography of Malcolm X

The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA

In Darkest England, and the Way Out

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

147: Impact Positive - Katherine Ryzhaya

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Welcome to Episode 147 of SunCast! 

If you haven't listened to yesterdays mini-episode with Jon Bonnano, please go check that out, as it’s the prologue to this interview you’re about to hear!

This episode is the first up in a new series we’re calling Impact Positive. Today's guest is Ms. Katherine Ryzhaya, Chief Commercial Officer at Lightsource BP. Our aim is to shine a light on under-represented perspectives, people groups, and pathways meant to inspire you along your journey and geared to help make your impact positive as well.

I admittedly didn’t know much about Katherine when Jon brought her to my attention, but boy am I ever glad to have met her. I expect you’ll enjoy getting to know her as much as I did. Her story is impressive, as is her sheer determination, will power, intelligence and intuition.

Resources:

Connect with Katherine on LinkedIn

Connect with Jon on LinkedIn

Learn more about Lightsource BP

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

146: Introducing Impact Positive, with Jon Bonanno

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Welcome to Episode 146 of SunCast!

Today, Jon Bonanno and Nico discuss a new idea to introduce those who aren't in the spotlight but are impacting the world positively to a larger audience. Tune in to hear their ideas and how you can help!

Resources:

Connect with Jon on LinkedIn

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

145: Tara Doyle, Part II - Leadership & Life

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Welcome to Episode 145 of SunCast!

If you’ve jumped straight to this episode and haven’t yet listened to Part 1 with Tara, well I strongly encourage you to go back and check that one out first. Today is Part II, picking up where we left off to go further into her story and discuss regular topics such as Lessons Learned and Hot or Hype.

Remember you can always find me on Twitter, LinkedIn or email 

Resources from today’s episode:

Connect with Tara on LinkedIn

Connect with PVEL on Twitter

Tara Doyle’s PVEL Bio

Announcement of PVEL spinout from DNV-GL

BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS:

144: Tara Doyle, PVEL’s Secret Weapon

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Welcome to Episode 144 of SunCast!

Today’s entrepreneur just took a HUGE leap, literally taking her company with her. Tara Doyle and her solar lab tech nerds at PVEL sold their company, then-called PV Evolution Labs, to DNV-GL half a decade ago (you can hear more on that here).

In January, they spun it back out as a separate business retaining the PVEL brand. She’s a spitfire on a mission, and we talked so much that I couldn’t fit it into 1 episode. So, today is Part 1, and next week will be part 2 (on Tuesday). So keep an eye out.

Hope you’re having a phenomenal March. Surely you’re aware it’s Women’s History Month? I’m taking Tara’s advice and incorporating more female voices into SunCast, starting with hers!

Come along today to learn, How Tara started as an Admin at Powerlight (including the sheer “who luck” that got here the job) and how she parlayed that open door into a career and a glass-ceiling-busting epic journey.

And, next week we’ll have not two but Three episodes, as I’ll be introducing a new series called Impact Positive, the brainchild of my friend Jon Bonanno. First up in that series is Katherine Ryzhaya, so stay tuned.

Remember you can always find me on Twitter, LinkedIn or email 

Resources from today’s episode:

Connect with Tara on LinkedIn

Connect with PVEL on Twitter

Tara Doyle’s PVEL Bio

Announcement of PVEL spinout from DNV-GL

BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS:


143: Emerging Market Dynamics with Luis Morales

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Welcome to Episode 143 of SunCast with Luis Morales!

Luis Morales has been involved in growing the Latam and Caribbean solar market for nearly a decade, having run Latam for Enphase and dominating markets like Puerto Rico & Mexico.

Today we hear his insights into the common mistakes he sees when entering new markets.

Resources:

Connect with Luis on LinkedIn

Emerging Markets Are Too Small… and Other Fallacies That Aren't Helping Your Business by Luis Morales

Books Mentioned:

Start with No - Jim Camp 

Zero to One - Peter Thiel

Good to Great - Jim Collins

Mindset - Carol Dweck

Why Nations Fail - Daron Acemoglu & James Robinson

Finding Ultra - Rich Roll

142: Costa Nicolaou, PanelClaw

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Welcome to Episode 142 of SunCast, Solar Warrior!

Costa Nicolaou has been at the helm of PanelClaw since it’s inception, guiding the company to a 40% market share of the flat roof solar racking market. As employee #1 he’s watched as the racking market has exploded to a healthy $1.5Billion little niche!

Costa’s energy and enthusiasm are infectious, but we also dig into some hard-won lessons, like how much it cost PanelClaw to get out of the low margin ground mount racking business.

Resources:

Connect with Costa on LinkedIn

Check out the PanelClaw Website

Books Mentioned:

Power of Habit - Charles Duhig

Titans of the Climate - Kelly Sims Gallagher

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

141: Rick Ivins, Value Engineering & Finding Focus

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Welcome to Episode 141!

Today’s exceptional entrepreneur, Rick Ivins, was introduced to me by Chris Grablutz, who happens to work for one of Rick’s companies, PV Pros. Thanks Chris!  Rick has an insatiable appetite for learning, and it has manifested in his building not 1 but 3 companies in the last decade (you’ll learn why he killed one of them and how the other 2 are now thriving). 

I thought it appropriate that we bring him on to share about 2 things very important to the Solar industry 1) value engineering to improve project quality, and 2) training up good people in your organization. Rick is another infinite learner, just like you, so be sure you have your pen & paper ready for note taking!

Resources:

Connect with Rick on LinkedIn

Check out purepower.com & pvpros.com

Rick’s Article - Urgent: Rapid Shutdown Increases Project Costs Starting Jan 1, 2019

Books Mentioned:

Power of Habits - Charles Duhig

Atomic Habits - James Clear

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

140: A 7 Figure Solar Business in Under 2 Years, Matthew Britt of Switch Energy

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Welcome to Episode 140 of SunCast.

Matthew Britt, CEO of Switch Energy, is a Canadian entrepreneur and startup junkie who is one of the best networkers I’ve ever met. His story is a very interesting one, and as I got to know him, I knew he’d be a great resource for you fellow #SolarWarriors since he’s got such a varied and deep experience in starting and running successful enterprise. We dive deep on how he retired at 30 from his first career and is plowing all the earnings and next decade of his life into the school of hard knocks that is revolutionizing the energy industry. Matt is constantly pinging me telling me how he’s connected with this or that guest, and I think you, solar warrior, are going to love his energy.

A Canadian entrepreneur, Matt jumped into solar in 2018 with Zero prior experience in the business. Today, he is leveraging partnerships, the 'new economy' and millennials to grow fast! And, he's doing it in very efficient and innovative ways. He's also an avid SunCast listener, and I'm not aware of another listener who's actively utilized what they've learned from SunCast in their own business the way Matt has.

In today's episode, Matt shares how he is building on his past experience with the fitness and network marketing industries to create lasting partnerships. He also gave insight into how he has learned as a Gen X'er to work with and learn from millennials, and how that has helped their content marketing to win in a crowded marketplace. Matt is the real deal when it comes to being a startup junkie, and I thoroughly enjoyed this conversation. I think you will as well.

Resources:

Connect with Matthew on LinkedIn

Follow Matthew on Twitter

Check out Switch Energy’s Website

Books/Audio Mentioned:

Challenge to Succeed - Jim Rohn

Sometimes You Win, Sometimes You Learn - John C. Maxwell

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus

139: NJ Solar’s Founding Father, Lyle Rawlings

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Welcome to Episode 139!

Today’s #solarwarrior is a true pioneer in the industry, and described as “the founding father of renewable-energy legislation in New Jersey’’ by the New York Times!  Thanks to John Moran for putting Mr. Lyle Rawlings on my radar. His company Advanced Solar Products has been crusading for solar in New Jersey and beyond for nearly 30 years.

Resources:

Follow Lyle on Twitter

Check out Advanced Solar Products Website

Email Lyle: lyle@advancedsolarproducts.com

Connect with Lyle on LinkedIn 

Books Mentioned:

The Powerhouse (Inside the Invention of a Battery to Save the World) - Steve Levine

The Angels of our Better Nature - Steven Pinker

Links:

Empowered by the Sun - NYT

Here Comes the Sun Power - CBS

Profile of One of New Jersey’s Champions of Clean Renewable Energy - NJ Spotlight

About the Host of SunCast:

Nico Johnson is the creator and host of SunCast, a regular conversation with Solar Industry professionals who are leading in emerging solar markets. The content of the show is geared towards listeners looking for insights on where the markets are headed, how to position themselves or their companies, and what today's market leaders do to stay ahead of the pack.

Nico is a 10-year veteran of the solar industry, having led development in the US and Latin America for global companies like Trina Solar and Conergy.  He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala and is considered one of the market's leading experts on solar PV expansion in the region.

Nico can be reached on Linked In https://www.linkedin.com/in/nickalus