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⚡Democratizing Access To Clean Power

Watt It Takes

Photo by Jason Blackeye / Unsplash

Table of Contents

Host: Emily Kirsch
Guest: Kiran Bhatraju | Founder & CEO | Arcadia
Category: ⚡ Renewable Energy

Podcast’s Essential Bites:

[2:02] “We started Arcadia to give everyone access to clean energy. It was as simple as that. This is a very closed balkanized industry. And so the core idea was to build technology to make it incredibly simple for anyone that pays a power bill to access clean energy.”

[2:44] “We are a software business that looks more like a marketplace in energy. Really, the biggest part of the business today is community solar. So we work with dozens of developers who build large multi-megawatt projects and we're able to bring that cheaper, cleaner energy to consumers. The customer doesn't have to do anything, which is a very unique thing to say in energy broadly. It is guaranteed to be cheaper than the utility account.”

[16:58] “From day one, the idea was we were going to build software to manage the thing that almost everyone does in America, […] which is to pay a power bill. And the financial connectivity was super important, […] it allowed us to deliver new products, but the data that we could pull out of the account how you were using energy, whether you were moving or not, did you pay your power bill on time, all those things were incredibly important. And so we built technology to basically disintermediate the utility in the first and manage that bill and ingest that data. And the first product we monetized was a renewable energy certificate. […] It is a sort of paper offset in some respects that you could buy and retire. And this is what the Fortune 1000 we're using to claim clean energy. […] And it was incredibly exciting because we had customers everywhere in all 50 states.”

[21:37] “There were so many things about […] trying to build software on top of an incumbent. First of all, people just didn't really understand what we were doing. […] And I think it's changed dramatically. But the people didn't really understand that value prop or that consumer that would actually want that. I think second, something that still persists to this day, is the data in this sector is so siloed and stove piped. […] Some of them have smart meters, some of them don't, some of them have smart meters and it's not even published to the consumer. There's just so much variation. And we still deal with this today, the data can be really ugly it can be riddled with errors. And that's part of what we do is we normalize this data because we have data points across the entire country. […] We had utilities that were billing on […] a 30 day cycle, then they just decided to do 48 days. There were so many of these issues that we've had to normalize.”

[34:13] “One of the things I'm most proud of is in the immediate aftermath of COVID. […] We've always talked about doing peer to peer payments, we have the infrastructure to do it. But this is the time when it really makes sense to really make a difference. And so we spun up a program we call our Good Energy Program, in a matter of days, where we were able to raise a quarter million dollars from existing customers to help pay power bills for other customers who couldn't, or were struggling.”

Rating: ⚡⚡⚡

🎙️ Full Episode: Apple | Spotify (Original Title: "Arcadia Founder & CEO Kiran Bhatraju")
🕰️ 50 min | 🗓️ 09/28/2021
✅ Time saved: 48 min

Additional Links:
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