September 27, 2011 in Solar
SolSolution is a non-profit organization that cleverly uses the for-profit Power Purchasing Agreement model to build and operate solar systems at under-priveleged schools. SolSolution then sells the solar-generated electricity to the schools, and uses whatever funds that would normally be considered profits to re-invest in the school’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) and Green Entrepreneurship programs.
To finance the upfront costs of the solar projects, SolSolution is able to attract a variety of investors (donors, foundations, banks, …) with low expected rates of return. SolSolution then maximizes its revenue stream by receiving payments not only from selling electricity to the schools, but also from federal incentives, state incentives, and the sale of renewable energy credits (RECS).
SolSolution’s non-profit capacity and unique and low-cost capital model allows SolSolution to maintain a significant competitive edge over other PPA providers in the solar industry. And at scale, SolSolution is confident that it could offer the most competitive pricing in the industry, beating out for-profit competitors on price alone.
For the schools, SolSolution provides essentially a zero-risk opportunity to participate in SolSolution’s Education Power Purchasing Agreement, E-PPA. The schools buy electricity like before, but with SolSolutions E-PPA, they have returns that are invested in their educational programs! And more over, their electricity will come from a carbon-free and local source.
Is SolSolution’s model sustainable without government incentives? Maybe not in the way it operates now. But that’s ok. SolSolution should take advantage of the incentives available now to be able to grow and eventually adapt when needed.
SolSolution’s vision is by 2020, to install 1GW of solar capacity and provide $100million to low-income schools.
This is awesome. And very bright. :-)