,In this episode of the Impact Podcast, Innov8social founder talks to Bryan Birsic, CEO of Wunder Capital an investment platform for solar energy projects. Wunder Capital develops and manages solar investment funds by leveraging its national partnership network, tested processes, proprietary underwriting framework, and best-in-class online investment portal.
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Meet Bryan Birsic
Bryan started his career with Bain & Company, a business consulting firm in New York. At Bain, Bryan and his partner Blythe, created the project Green Team. The team examined every facet of the office–from usage of paper cups to energy consumption. Then they came up with a plan, to function more sustainably. Bryan then moved on to join Village Ventures. A venture capital firm focusing on the consumer media/retail and financial services sectors. Village Ventures has built a platform, which it offers to seed early stage firms, provide for collaboration, co-investment and administrative cost sharing.
Bryan worked there for four years, and got bitten by the entrepreneurial bug. Bryan wanted to do something which would have a significant impact, so he founded Wunder Capital. It is the third company that Bryan created, he wanted to make use of software revolution like, the amazon web services. At Wunder, they wanted to make it as efficient and cost effective as possible by using technology, to help small businesses to go solar. Wunder Capital uses crowdfunding to bring in as much capital, as possible into this space.
Wunder has evolved the way funding is being sourced and tied to projects. In 2004, it was more like a marketplace where any credit investor or institution can come under the platform. Bryan and team noticed that some of the investors were looking for more data on materials and approach, before investing. Investing in solar is not as intuitive as a real estate and startups. But the investors liked the fact, that it is an impact investment, and they were presented returns portfolio as well.
As things started to evolve, investors were asking for good portfolios to invest. They don’t want to be tied to a specific project. So Bryan and team identified set of portfolios or projects that matches the criterias of the investors. They started to raise funds against the portfolios or bunch of projects, rather than a specific project. Any credit investor/institution can come to wundercapital.com, and they sell notes out of the funds. Wunder capital immediately uses that money and lends it to business. As the businesses pay back, Wunder capital pays back the investors. This model has evolved to be more successful, for Wunder Capital.
Bryan’s perpetual frustration comes from the fact, that he is unable to unlock this space to as many investors as possible. They operate under the regulation D portion of the 2012 jobs act, which means only accredited investors can participate in the fund. You can qualify as investor, only if your income is above 200,000 as an individual or 300,000 as a family. You can also qualify using your assets, if they are worth over a million, excluding your primary residence. So these restrictions are kind of a pain to accept a lot of willing investors. But Bryan and team are working hard to ease out these SEC restrictions.
Website : https://www.wundercapital.com/
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/WunderCapital/
Twitter : https://twitter.com/WunderCapital