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New Source of Solar Supplies for Smaller PV Installers

Aug. 19, 2019
The company will provide enterprise-quality, supply chain services and products for residential and C&I solar installers, developers and other solar professionals with direct-to-manufacturer pricing without the need for large purchases.

A group of wind and solar industry executives launched a new company, Strategic Solar Sourcing, that’s promoted as the first to offer small- and medium-sized solar businesses supply chain management outsourcing services and products previously available only to large organizations, including low-cost equipment pricing on modules, inverters and racking with resulting significant bottom-line improvements.

"After more than 30 years of collective experience in both wind and solar energy, ranging from residential solar installations to massive utility-scale wind and solar projects, our team recognized small- and medium-sized solar businesses are at a real disadvantage to effectively compete in this area," John Billingsley, chairman and CEO of Strategic Solar Sourcing, said in the press release. Our focus will be to give our customers access to a level of buying power and expertise that have been out of reach until now – driving down costs and making them more competitive and successful."

The newly formed Strategic Solar Sourcing will provide enterprise-quality, supply chain services and products for residential and C&I solar installers, developers, EPCs and other solar professionals with direct-to-manufacturer pricing without the need for large purchases. Drawing on decades of experience in the broader renewable energy industry, the company provides financeable products and warranties, standardized data specs, forward-thinking technology roadmap acquisition and personalized, full supply chain services.

"To be competitive in today's solar market, solar professionals need to have quality, financeable, product available when they need it, where they need it, and at the best price," said Joseph Kiwak, president of Strategic Solar Sourcing. "The only way to make that happen is with an experienced supply chain team on staff. Since most small and medium-sized solar businesses are unable to acquire or afford the talent needed to deliver this level of service within their own company, they consequently struggle to compete with the larger solar firms. Our mission is to fill this void and provide our clients with the services, products and buying power necessary to compete in the expanding solar industry with reduced costs and increased profits."

Strategic Solar Sourcing's outsourcing services cover the entire solar supply chain lifecycle including equipment requirements and specification management, strategic sourcing, supplier management, sourcing support, operational purchasing, procurement administration and account payable administration. Additionally, the company has partnered with top brands to guarantee Tier 1 modules, inverters – both string and micro – and all types of solar racking.

The company is headed by the management team that built Tri Global Energy, one of America's top five wind project developers, and Sunfinity Renewable Energy, an EPC serving multiple states in residential, C&I and utility scale solar. This includes Billingsley and Joseph Kiwak, as president. Kiwak currently also serves as Sunfinity's chief strategy and procurement officer, and formerly as executive director of Supply Chain for Sunnova Energy, and VP of supply chain for NRG Renew/Home where he was responsible for over 500MW of residential, C&I, community solar and utility scale projects.

Keith Bluford serves as Strategic Solar Sourcing's senior VP responsible for business development and sales. Bluford's credentials include a role as SVP for business development at Energy Bin, a wholesale solar B2B exchange with over 1,000 members in the solar industry, and a former position as SVP sales/marketing for Sunora Energy Solutions, a subsidiary of NRG.

"Having the same level of supply chain visibility, meeting customer demand, and securing inventory supply at the lowest price has always been tough for the smaller company," said Bluford. "We solve that problem by handling all of the many nuances of effective, supply chain management including strategic sourcing, technology research, negotiation and contractual management with the manufacturers, warehousing and logistics.  And most importantly, our services and direct-to-manufacturer pricing have significant impact on our clients' bottom line."