Tell us about yourself and your background
I graduated from the University of California San Diego with a double major in economics and material science and engineering. I’ve always been interested in the renewable energy industry space, so when an opportunity arrived to join Stem, I took it without hesitation and I haven’t looked back since. I’ve now been here for about two years, and I consider myself lucky because I found a good fit with my first job out of college.
What is your role at Stem?
I’m currently a Financial Analysis Engineer on the Commercial & Industrial (C&I) team. I provide strategic support to account executives throughout the sales cycle – everything from the initial proposal development to economic analysis and energy storage modeling, and all the way through to quoting, contract generation, and booking.
I would say my main role is helping customers and partners quantify the value of Athena® – Stem’s clean energy intelligence platform. Once we receive site data from a customer, I run it through Athena to estimate ESS revenue. For behind-the-meter systems, revenues include energy arbitrage, demand charge management and other potential value stacking opportunities, including demand response programs. For the front-of-the-meter systems, we provide estimates for merchant revenue and ancillary services. I then present the data in a cash flow and provide high level economics metrics to help partners evaluate the ROI of the project. The goal is to get partners comfortable with how we come up with the analysis as well as provide them with financial insight to enable them to make an informed decision on whether to move forward with the project.
What would you say is the most interesting thing you’ve worked on lately?
We’re seeing positive trends nationwide in renewable energy adoption where states around the country are taking matters into their own hands to come up with storage incentive programs. I’m very interested in knowing the details of these incentive programs to fully understand the differences in how they are administered and structured, whether ESS needs to be programmed to behave in a certain way to comply with the program’s rules and eventually how payments are dispersed to the energy asset owners.
That way, when we release an offering to partners, they can feel assured that we’ve done our due diligence in researching, navigating, and advising on all of these different incentives. That’s why partners trust Stem and our energy experts as their one-stop shop for projects in California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New York, Ontario, Texas, Connecticut, and other markets.
What recent industry trends have made a big impression on you?
One of the biggest trends that I’m seeing is a huge uptick in electric vehicle (EV) adoption. Our eMobility partnership with ENGIE North America makes us well equipped to offer solar, storage, and EV solutions.
Many C&I projects currently have or plan to install EV charging on site, and there are different distributed energy resources that need to be optimized within the EV charging infrastructure – including solar or generators – that you need to take into account with the site load. There’s a lot of added complexity with solar, storage, and EVs that needs to be optimized and that’s where Athena thrives.
Athena can handle the complexity of the addition of EVs to existing DERs and building loads on site. Not many platforms out there are able to optimize multiple assets under a single platform – Athena is precisely built for this type of situation.
Another exciting event that happened recently was Stem’s acquisition of AlsoEnergy and its PowerTrack solar monitoring system. As a combined company and platform for clean energy intelligence, this makes us an even stronger team as the one-stop shop for energy optimization.
Any advice for professionals wanting to enter the energy space?
Given that I’ve only been in the workplace for about two years now, I’d like to echo what my manager Kim Perelli said to me, which is basically to be proactive and don’t limit yourself to the job description that you’re given. I think that works here at Stem, even though we’re a public company, we have a startup culture where everyone is free to explore their interests.
What about Stem would you want our customers and partners to know?
The biggest thing I want potential customers and partners to know is that Stem is a turnkey solution that has been maximizing the value of energy assets for over a decade. We are with you every step of the way – from the initial proposal development and economics analysis, sourcing of hardware and navigating tough supply chain issues, all the way through to deployment and operation of ESS. Additionally, the savings estimates that we provide to customers and partners, like estimated utility bill reduction or merchant revenues, are based on real-life data that we collect from 1.4+ GWh of our existing sites. Plus, through Stem’s Channel Partner Program, we have hundreds of project developers and solar EPCs that we work with across the country – and now, around the globe.