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US Partnerships Newsletter - Q2 2024

 

We hope everyone had a restful and joyful holiday weekend! We’re excited to share some highlights from our US team this past quarter.

 

1. Allume Will Serve as a Project Pipeline Partner Florida’s $156M Winning Solar for All Coalition

Allume is honored to serve as a project pipeline partner for the winning Solar for All Coalition in Florida. In April, Solar Energy Loan Fund (SELF), Solar United Neighbors, and The Nature Conservancy announced that they are recipients of $156 million from the EPA’s Solar for All federal funding.

Together, they will develop initiatives that will enable thousands of low-income Floridians to access affordable solar energy. With our expertise in multifamily solar, Allume will provide a pipeline of multifamily solar projects to benefit low-income residents in the Sunshine State.

 

In the words of Erin Autin, Regional Engagement Director at SELF:

"Multifamily buildings are an untapped market that represent an opportunity to accelerate the clean energy transition. With Solar for All Funding, SELF and partners like Allume will help bridge the gap for renters, overcoming financial and logistical barriers, and allowing them to participate in the clean energy economy while reducing energy burdens.”

With behind-the-meter solutions like SolShare, low-income residents in multifamily buildings can directly consume rooftop solar for the first time, resulting in an average of 30-50% lower utility bills. We look forward to further breaking down barriers to solar for multifamily residents and ensuring the benefits of solar reach every community in Florida.

See a snippet of a talk we gave about the need and potential for multifamily solar energy to SELF’s stakeholders in Florida.

Screenshot 2024-07-05 at 10.35.25 am

 

2. Allume Gains Multifamily Lending Expert as a Strategic Advisor

 

We are thrilled to welcome Ernest Benjamin as our Strategic Advisor. With over 20 years of experience in multifamily finance, primarily specializing in FHA lending programs, Ernest brings invaluable expertise to our team.

Ermest Benjamin - Headshot-20220706-150738-1

Background

Ernest has financed loans ranging from $1 million to $300 million, including affordable housing redevelopments and new constructions.

In 2021, Ernest helped start Bravo Capital, a HUD lending platform specializing in FHA and bridge lending throughout the United States. He served as the Chief Credit Officer and FHA Chief Underwriter, responsible for operational and lending decisions .

Prior to Bravo, Ernest was a Senior Vice President & Chief Underwriter at Walker & Dunlop’s FHA Multifamily and Healthcare platform, overseeing loan evaluation and approval from concept through closing. Over his career, he has underwritten and closed more than $500 million in loans, including over $200 million in healthcare loans.

 

Despite his extensive experience, Ernest noticed something was missing:

“During my time driving lending decisions, I saw very little solar adaptation in multifamily. Even within the Green-specific financing incentives, solar was rarely considered due to split incentives. When introduced to SolShare, it was immediately obvious that Allume had the solution.”

– Ernest Benjamin, Strategic Advisor at Allume Energy

 

 

3. Completed Installation in Florida Lowers Energy Bills for Residents in 70 Apartment Units

 

Allume continues to expand its presence in Orlando, FL, with another successful installation! Located at Rosemont Windermere apartments, this project will help 70 apartments reduce their energy bills. Partnering with minority-owned installation company Innovative Solar Energy, we installed 21 individual systems on 7 buildings, each providing solar power for 3-4 apartment units.

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Photo credit: Innovative Solar  

Richard Gooden Jr, Allume’s Senior Technical Support Engineer, supported the installation and interacted with residents eager to learn about solar savings.
 
Richard shared,
 
“I had the chance to talk to several residents and tell them what we were doing out here. They loved the idea and were excited to see their electricity bills drop. It was a great experience working with the property, OUC (Orlando Utilities Commission), and Innovative Solar to complete this project.
 
IMG_6627_Original Large

Innovative Solar completes the latest SolShare installation in Florida.

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Innovative Solar completes the latest SolShare installation in Florida.

 

 

3. Allume’s Opinion on the Scalable Impact in Multifamily Housing Highlighted in PV Magazine

 

Our Executive Accounts Manager, Mel Bergsneider, was featured in PV Magazine with a thought leadership piece on Solar for All. The article highlights multifamily assets as a significant opportunity for the $7 billion federal funds and their potential to scale equitable impact. Check out the publication here.

Screenshot 2024-07-05 at 10.53.36 am

 

Mel writes:

“The $7 billion Solar for All grants represent more than just a financial investment; they symbolise a commitment to equitable and sustainable energy solutions. As multifamily housing emerges as a key player in the solar revolution, it is poised to not only benefit from but also drive positive change in the clean energy landscape.”


– Mel Bergsneider, Executive Accounts Manager at Allume Energy

 

4. Where to Catch Us - Come Say Hi!

We will be speaking at:

  • RE+, Sept 9 - 12 in Anaheim, CA

  • Renewable Energy Markets (REM) Conference, Sept 16 - 18 in Denver, CO

  • Florida Women in Leadership Forum, Oct 21 - 23 in Tampa, FL

  • Chicago Build, Oct 22 - 23 in Chicago, IL

Please reach out if you will be there too! If you would like us to attend or speak about multifamily solar at your next conference, please contact us at info@allumeenergy.com.

 

Stay Connected

If you have any questions, insights, or updates you'd like to share, feel free to contact me.

Thank you for being a part of the Allume community.

 

Aliya Bagewadi 

US Director of Strategic Partnerships

aliya@allumeenergy.com.au