I am looking for designers and technical co-founders to disrupt retail electricity.

I love summer. Summer means playtime, the beach, surfing, being in the water, running through the woods and on the beach with my pup, being outside, rocking on the front porch with my loved ones, reading interesting books (currently in the middle of an awesome shipwreck survival novel called Island of the Lost), and watching sports as a fan (US Open, The British Open, The Tour de France, the World Cup, Copa América, UEFA European Championship, Leadville 100, and the summer Olympics). Summer also means that it is my time to retreat and think about how I am going to tackle “what’s next” regarding my career. SurfingACK

Let me back up. It was during the experience starting and running my first company that put me onto the search to understand leadership (and my limitations), culture, and the keys to winning long-term. I read dozens of books, joined entrepreneur and executive groups, took all of the hot personality tests, and enrolled in a few leadership programs.

It was during one of the these programs, The Strategic Coach, that inspired me to look at “time off” differently. Instead of looking at a vacation as a reward at the end of hard work, I am supposed to look at it as an important beginning. Take time off first, while fresh, to reflect, get inspired, and go off the grid to create the game plan for what is next. In other words, summer for me is my time to get inspired. I think Dan Sullivan even said that many of the great ideas in history came to people when they were literally away from the day to day grind and not thinking about the problem, an esoteric reverse osmosis.  RunninginWoods

It is too early for me to come out of my time in the water with anything but a sunburn, cuts and scrapes from the skegs of my surfboard, and a huge smile on my face; however, I do have a few ideas of what is next for me and wanted to share them with you and ask for a little help.

I am looking for a few awesome technical and design co-founders to build a new disruptive, not incremental, energy startup. We want to build a portal into the powered home for Millennials starting with retail electricity.

Before I explain more about the purpose of the company and the problems in the industry, I want to talk about the culture of the company we want to build.

I need a few compadres that have a passion to solve the world’s energy problems, willing to break the rules to help a customer, able to rise above their individual skill as a team to win the premier league (I am talking about Leicester City, but can you believe Iceland? Same population as Leicester, coincidence?), has asked his or her boss to ignore company policy in order to extend their Nicaragua surf trip an extra week, and can quell a riot by themselves (or as we say in Texas: One Riot, One Ranger).

If you identify with these foundational codes or know someone that does, please reach out to me. 

And while we are starting with retail electricity, the vision is larger. I think about startups and working towards a huge purpose like how Kai Lenny thinks about being a professional waterman. As long as he is in the water, he will be the best surfer, stand-up paddle boarder, kite boarder, and windsurfer. “When your motivation comes from deep within for the love of the sport and what you are doing…there really is no limits to what you can accomplish.”

There are currently 3 huge missing pieces to how we currently experience and manage our homes and power it:

  1. There is NO trust. Currently, there is no provider (electricity, gas, cable, wifi, etc..) that offers us trust, transparency, and an awesome experience (think Southwest Airlines). And while the incumbents talk about changing their ways…cultures cannot be transformed overnight and maybe never at all.
  2. There is NO sustainability. Current retail electricity providers have an incentive for us to use more electricity in our home, not less. We believe that consumers should be rewarded and helped by its partner to live more sustainably: reduce consumption, use renewable energy sources, have immediate on-demand information (the last time you lost power, did you have a great experience?), and save money.
  3. There is NO UX/UI for the modern Millennial. There is currently no modern and elegant experience that makes it easy for you and me to purchase electricity, use electricity, pay for electricity, reduce usage of electricity, nor get help when there is a problem. Millennials want it to be easy, one step, and from sales, onboarding, product usage, to the customer service perspective, a care-free experience. “Customers are increasingly looking for new options that mirror interactions they have in other sectors, such as banking, retail or air travel. Small businesses are also seeking more seamless interactions to manage energy costs.”SunsetACK

In my 5+ years of investing into the power and renewable industries, I have learned that even the industry incumbents acknowledge the flaws in the existing ecosystem and the need for change. Until someone builds a company that serves customers with an experience that is on-demand, transparent, honest, elegant, and friendly, nothing is going to change. And those incumbents that I have met that do get it are already on the team.

If you are interested in hearing more and/or have a few opinions of your own, let’s discuss. This is my current musing and the timing is now.

Written by kirkcoburn

Founder & Managing Director @SURGEVentures, Founder @SiriusXMPGATOUR, Founder @ChiefOutsiders, @LTRaceSeries Buckle Holder, Blessed Husband & Father

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