BNamericas – Distributed Solar Power: Power for…

Energy technology company Reverde, which is present in 30 municipalities in the state of Rio de Janeiro, is expanding its solar contracting services to the state of Minas Gerais, as well as targeting businesses in São Paulo and Alagos.

The Brazilian company, created in April, aims to make it easier for consumers of any size to use a clean and cheap source of energy through a distributed generation model.

Reverde’s goal is to reach approximately 1,000 customers by 2022, compared to 200 today, CEO Felipe Matos told Binamérica.

In this interview, Reverde comments on how the business works and his outlook for the local distributed generation market.

BNamericasHow does Reverde’s business work? Can any consumer, regardless of their consumption level, contract for your services?

MathewsBrazil has begun allowing small consumers to choose their energy supplier through distributed generation. So we were born with this purpose: to help millions of Brazilians have the option of using clean and cheap energy.

If I live at home, I can put a solar system on my roof and use less energy than the utility. But this system works during the day, and it is not cheap to put in a battery to get electricity at night. So a credit and debit system is implemented, to combine your energy with the energy output from the utility.

A farm or ranch can do this, but must bear the high costs of installing and maintaining the equipment.

What Reverde does is by renting solar plants and assigning this credit to consumers, who do not have to deal with installation and maintenance costs or worry about taking out insurance for the equipment, for example. This applies to any consumer, including those who live in a rented apartment. We only accept social fares. [applied to low-income consumers]Because they are so low they are subsidized by the government.

BNamericas: Are solar plants leased after that?

Mathews: Yes, we are looking for plants that are being developed in partnership with their owners, who do not want to be involved in business.

BNamericasToday there are several solar power projects under development in the country.

Mathews: Yes, this is incredible. From large to medium and small groups. And these entrepreneurs are making good profits. It is a great business even for small and medium investors.

The solar generator is more modular, you can do small projects, and you don’t need to go to the capital market, for example. Since everyone consumes energy, the investor can protect himself against inflation.

BNamericas: In addition to getting clean energy, do your customers want to get economic benefits? why?

MathewsIt is the discount that drives most customers. Fixed bills such as gas, electricity, telephone and electricity represent 9% of the average Brazilian income and cover half of the bills. This is a heavy burden for Brazilians. At Reverde, we are paid by solar plant owners, not customers. It’s the same case with, which identifies empty hotels and finds customers for them. We do the same with solar power.

The Brazilian electricity system is based on many plants with different levels of efficiency, and when you pay, you pay for everything, including the existing defects, only because many plants have outdated technologies. gatos [illegal power connections]Projects with political-electoral bias, etc. With Reverde, we are talking about new plants with solar panels in a country with very high solar incidence.

BNamericasCould this change with the gradual taxation of distributed generation from 2023?

Mathews: There will be a natural landing of the market. We believe that in the future, the consumer will have the power to choose the energy supplier. Regardless of the control device, we want to be the symbol of choice in power. Using energy for good, to improve the world, with simplicity and clarity.

The joint generation will be affected by the result of this change, but I think this is healthy, because it must coexist with the distributors. In any case, the projects will continue. There will be a decrease, but this is not necessarily bad. There is a huge queue of distributed generation projects asking to find distributors. And the chain tends to be more professional. With such a high return today, there are as many adventures, for better or worse, as any other race, such as the gold rush, coffee or sugar rush we experienced in Brazil.

Editor’s Note: The DG Regulatory Framework was approved in January. Under the new law, the current regulations that keep pre-connected small and medium-sized generations free of fees or tariffs, such as the use of the distribution network, will remain in place until December 2045.

That would be effective for new installations implemented in the first year of the law, until January 5, 2023.

After that, the payment will be phased in over six years until distributed generation units entering the system reach full capacity in 2028.

BNamericasHow many solar plants does Reverde currently lease? Where are they and what is their installed capacity?

MathewsToday we have seven micro plants in Rio and Minas Gerais, with a total installed capacity of around 1MWp, serving approximately 200 customers. Our goal is to close the year with about a thousand customers.

BNamericasThinking of expanding your solar portfolio? Besides Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais, which states are you looking at?

Mathews: We are looking carefully at the interior of São Paulo to serve CPFL Paulista. Lagos is on our radar.

BNamericasLooking for business and/or financial partners?

Mathews: We close the fundraising round. Regarding business partnerships, our model works as a network. Individuals who are interested in the business and use their local influence to bring in new customers. Today we have about 30 business partners. And now we’re partnering with a large pet store chain to offer discounts on their stores and our services.

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