Tennessee entrepreneurs gain advantage in trillion dollar global advanced energy market with new program
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The Energy Mentor Network, a mentorship program that supports energy entrepreneurs and startups in Tennessee, has announced its first graduate, Solar Site Design. The Energy Mentor Network is run by the Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council in partnership with Launch Tennessee.
The goal of the Energy Mentor Network is to foster the growth of Tennessee advanced energy technologies and startups by connecting entrepreneurs with mentors and industry specific expertise. The Network pairs mentors with promising new companies through a structured program involving panel presentations and mentoring sessions.
Headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, Solar Site Design is a collaborative, cloud-based marketplace platform that connects sales-ready commercial and industrial solar projects to top solar construction companies to drive down customer acquisition costs.
Solar Site Design achieved significant traction while enrolled in the Energy Mentor Network Program. More than 85 construction companies from 27 states have subscribed since the marketplace launched last year. Solar Site Design was among the first pool of applicants to be accepted in November 2016, and the company received strategic business, marketing, and financial guidance by completing a series of panels and discussions with its mentors.
"Solar Site Design is on track to double Commercial Marketplace memberships by the end of 2017 and standardize ‘behind the meter' commercial solar origination nationwide," said Jason Loyet, Founder of Solar Site Design.
The company is partnering with leading solar panel manufacturers that will help to attract more construction companies to subscribe to its Commercial Marketplace platform.
The mentor team for Solar Site Design included Entrepreneur-in-Residence Harvey Abouelata, Vice President of Commercial Solar at Solar Alliance; Coleman Adams, Managing Director of Crescendo Power; and John Hopkins, interim CEO of the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation.
In 2015, Solar Site Design won the U.S. Department of Energy's SunShot Catalyst award for its innovation on driving down the cost of solar through its software platform. The company was also invited to participate in Launch Tennessee's annual pitch competition at 36|86, the Southeast's premier entrepreneurship and technology conference in 2017.
"Tennessee is in a unique position to become the center of success for energy entrepreneurs and businesses," said Matt Kisber, President of TAEBC and President & CEO of Silicon Ranch Corporation. "The Energy Mentor Network is yet another tool Tennessee can leverage to become the #1 state in the Southeast for high-quality jobs."
Tennessee has emerged as a leader in the $1.4 trillion global advanced energy market. TAEBC's Advanced Energy Economic Impact Report found that advanced energy contributes $33.4 billion to the State's GDP, employs nearly 325,000 and includes 17,000 businesses. Mentorship to energy entrepreneurs is critical to growing advanced energy's economic impact in Tennessee.
About the Energy Mentor Network
The Energy Mentor Network is run by the Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council in partnership with Launch Tennessee and is modeled after CONNECT San Diego's 30+-year-old Springboard program. Each company or entrepreneur is matched with C-level executives who have deep experience in growing and scaling companies. This mentoring team is led by the Entrepreneur-in-Residence who coaches and guides their company through the Energy Mentor Network for three to nine months
The Energy Mentor Network has two dozen mentors with expertise in energy systems, clean tech, intellectual property, business and finance strategy.
Applications are open for mentors and startups to participate in the Energy Mentor Network. For more information and to apply, visit: http://www.tnadvancedenergy.com/energy-mentor-network/apply/.
About the Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council
The Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council champions advanced energy as a job creation and economic development strategy. It educates public officials and business leaders about the value and job creation potential of Tennessee's advanced energy economy, establishes strategic partnerships to connect assets with opportunities and informs policy that expands and strengthens the industry. For more information, visit www.tnadvancedenergy.com.
About Launch Tennessee
Launch Tennessee is a public/private partnership that fosters entrepreneurship, high-growth startups and capital in the state. We serve entrepreneurs by working with six regional Entrepreneur Centers to deliver funding and services, by implementing entrepreneurial programs and by engaging in activities to grow capital. To support startups commercializing technology, LaunchTN partners with leadership groups in the state's key industry sectors to operate networks in the life science and advanced energy sectors. LaunchTN is proud to work with Life Science Tennessee and the Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council to operate these programs for Tennessee entrepreneurs which have served 28 startups, who have raised over $14M in funding. For more information visit launchtn.org.