With the prices of fossil fuels rising and recently imposed “green” mandates to improve energy efficiency, commercial, institutional and industrial companies are actively looking for alternative energy solutions to reduce energy costs and become more energy efficient. Given that there are over 5.3 million commercial and industrial buildings in the U.S., and that approximately 44% of energy consumption by commercial buildings is for space heating and hot water, developing a viable solar thermal energy system for commercial, institutional and industrial applications represents a significant opportunity.

Unfortunately, when evaluating solar thermal energy systems, many commercial, institutional and industrial applications could not 1.) achieve the high temperatures needed to replace traditional fossil fuel energy sources or 2.) achieve the efficiency needed to make the adoption of a solar thermal energy system financially viable.

The patent pending SunQuest 250® by Solar America Solutions (SAS) changes all of that. Rather than generate electricity like many solar panels, the SunQuest 250® solar collectors generate thermal energy from the sun's UV rays that is used to heat water and provide space heating. Up to 3x more efficient than competitors, it has shown to reduce traditional fossil fuel energy usage for hot water and space heating by 30% to 70%. The large amount of thermal energy produced and the efficiency of SAS's solar panels make them an ideal solution for commercial and institutional buildings and industrial processes.

SAS has solar collectors installed at over 50 customer locations, including the University of Indianapolis and the Indiana State Wabash Valley Correctional Facility. It has a strong pipeline of customers that includes correctional facilities, state government buildings, large hotels, commercial greenhouses, university dormitories, and car wash franchises.

1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer, CEO

Financial Summary

Previous Fundraise Summary

Security Type Revenue Share
Investor Eligibility All Investors
Minimum Investment $1,000
Payback Multiple 1.5x
Payment Frequency Quarterly
Disbursement Late Fees 5.00%
Loan Collateral Unsecured
Seniority Junior
Equivalent Interest Rate (/yr) 30.20%
Maturity June 1, 2021

Financials

Funding Plans & History

Team

1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background

Dave Crawmer

Missing

Don Crawmer

About Solar America Solutions

Entity Type C-Corp
Website

Headquarters

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Discussion

1533873539 bradfergusonsm
Bradford F

OK, how about this wrinkle... You maintain prices for the first order from an institution, but then make it known that their prices will go up for subsequent orders when the technology is proven? If they know they will payback the upfront cost within 5 years, then 6 years is still a great payback period...?

over 6 years ago
BF
Brad F

It seems like your pricing strategy is based on an anchoring bias, possibly to counteract it in potential clients. My read on your pricing strategy is that you have a Lexus quality product, but you are charging Toyota prices. You have a superior product, you have an order pipeline, you are charging an inferior price. Why not charge a fair price where people are still motivated to choose your product? For example, if your competitor charges $1,400 and produces 1400Energy in gains, you charge $1,400 and produce 2800Energy in gains. Why not charge $2,100 for your product?

almost 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Your point is very well taken. We have tried to keep our price at a competitive level while we build credibility since we are a young company that is gaining public knowledge slowly in general and quickly in a few key verticle markets, but it is difficult to convince new clients that our system can do what we say and know it can do. Getting our message out is one of the primary reasons we are seeking outside funding. We plan to increase our prices at a rate of $200 to $300 each year until we reach the price point you are talking about. We also have plans to have our next generation of collector ready for market in 2014 or 2015 which we believe will be an even more efficient collector and will bear a price increase over the SunQuest 250.

almost 7 years ago
BF
Brad F

I like the thinking behind the strategy! I guess when you are talking to a potential customer, they have a bit of a hard time "taking your word for it" (esp. perhaps because of failures of unrelated solar panels)... and _proving_ it with an respected independent tester would be expensive (and potentially cost prohibitive).

almost 7 years ago
2 replies
BB
Brian B

How many of your customers rely on government grants, credits, or subsidies to overcome the higher initial selling price of your product to realize cost savings? What percentage of total installation costs does the government cover for your customers on average?

What are the implications for your business if natural gas prices stay below $4.50 MMbtu? What is the company doing to mitigate this risk? How have low natural gas prices impacted your business since it was started?

about 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Thank you for your interest in our company and for your questions. While we recognize that there are valuable government incentives at any given time at both the state and federal level, we have a solar product that typically has a 3 to five year ROI without those added benefits. In fact, when we provide estimates and talk about ROI we do not include the government incentives. The SunQuest250 is unique its efficiency and its BTU output in that it takes at least two and often more of our closest competitor's products to do what one of our collectors can do. So our project price is much lower than our competitors are able to bid and very often they cannot perform in our commercial market. Roughly half of our customers are eligible for government incentives because they are either not for profit or government owned facilities.

about 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Sorry-to clarify the last sentence of my comments above...what I meant to say is that roughly half of our customers are INeligible for government incentives because they are either government facilities or not for profits.

about 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Regarding the current low price of natural gas, we are able to save our customers who are in regions with very low gas prices 50% and more, giving them an ROI of less than 5 years. In other markets like California, New England, and Europe where their fuel prices are much higher, the ROI is even shorter. When we project savings for clients we use the low fuel cost prices and do not assume increases in the future. The projected savibgs are still dramatic.

about 7 years ago
3 replies

Company Updates

Sign Up on Localstake Marketplace to see details on this business.

Discussion

1533873539 bradfergusonsm
Bradford F

OK, how about this wrinkle... You maintain prices for the first order from an institution, but then make it known that their prices will go up for subsequent orders when the technology is proven? If they know they will payback the upfront cost within 5 years, then 6 years is still a great payback period...?

over 6 years ago
BF
Brad F

It seems like your pricing strategy is based on an anchoring bias, possibly to counteract it in potential clients. My read on your pricing strategy is that you have a Lexus quality product, but you are charging Toyota prices. You have a superior product, you have an order pipeline, you are charging an inferior price. Why not charge a fair price where people are still motivated to choose your product? For example, if your competitor charges $1,400 and produces 1400Energy in gains, you charge $1,400 and produce 2800Energy in gains. Why not charge $2,100 for your product?

almost 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Your point is very well taken. We have tried to keep our price at a competitive level while we build credibility since we are a young company that is gaining public knowledge slowly in general and quickly in a few key verticle markets, but it is difficult to convince new clients that our system can do what we say and know it can do. Getting our message out is one of the primary reasons we are seeking outside funding. We plan to increase our prices at a rate of $200 to $300 each year until we reach the price point you are talking about. We also have plans to have our next generation of collector ready for market in 2014 or 2015 which we believe will be an even more efficient collector and will bear a price increase over the SunQuest 250.

almost 7 years ago
BF
Brad F

I like the thinking behind the strategy! I guess when you are talking to a potential customer, they have a bit of a hard time "taking your word for it" (esp. perhaps because of failures of unrelated solar panels)... and _proving_ it with an respected independent tester would be expensive (and potentially cost prohibitive).

almost 7 years ago
2 replies
BB
Brian B

How many of your customers rely on government grants, credits, or subsidies to overcome the higher initial selling price of your product to realize cost savings? What percentage of total installation costs does the government cover for your customers on average?

What are the implications for your business if natural gas prices stay below $4.50 MMbtu? What is the company doing to mitigate this risk? How have low natural gas prices impacted your business since it was started?

about 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Thank you for your interest in our company and for your questions. While we recognize that there are valuable government incentives at any given time at both the state and federal level, we have a solar product that typically has a 3 to five year ROI without those added benefits. In fact, when we provide estimates and talk about ROI we do not include the government incentives. The SunQuest250 is unique its efficiency and its BTU output in that it takes at least two and often more of our closest competitor's products to do what one of our collectors can do. So our project price is much lower than our competitors are able to bid and very often they cannot perform in our commercial market. Roughly half of our customers are eligible for government incentives because they are either not for profit or government owned facilities.

about 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Sorry-to clarify the last sentence of my comments above...what I meant to say is that roughly half of our customers are INeligible for government incentives because they are either government facilities or not for profits.

about 7 years ago
1533873469 dave crawmer   with glasses   dark background
Dave Crawmer
at Solar America Solutions
Team Member

Regarding the current low price of natural gas, we are able to save our customers who are in regions with very low gas prices 50% and more, giving them an ROI of less than 5 years. In other markets like California, New England, and Europe where their fuel prices are much higher, the ROI is even shorter. When we project savings for clients we use the low fuel cost prices and do not assume increases in the future. The projected savibgs are still dramatic.

about 7 years ago
3 replies
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