KINECT SOLAR – POWERING THE WORLD THROUGH SOLAR POWER
by Eugene Uhm, Business Development Specialist, EXIM Bank
Renewable energy has been around for over 2,000 years. The most basic form of renewable energy started with waterwheels/hydropower/hydroelectricity, then windmills/wind power, and now solar electricity/solar panels. With renewable energy being a focus of the Export-Import Bank of the United Sates (EXIM), companies like Kinect Solar will continue to contribute to the on-going growth of renewable energy.
I had the privilege of speaking with Carlos Del Rio – Regional Account Manager | Kinect Solar. To learn more, please reach out to Carlos at email@example.com
Could you provide an overview of Kinect Solar?
Kinect Solar is a $60MM Inc 500 company based in Austin, Texas, led by our wonderful CEO and Founder, Lauren Carson. The company is an independent distributor specializing in the wholesale distribution of solar panels and inverters. We also have a logistics wing that performs a white-glove logistics service exclusively for the solar industry. That’s transportation, warehousing, inventory- all of that, but tailored specifically to the solar industry’s needs and requirements. On the international market we’re a wholesale distributor specializing in the distribution of US Made Solar products, through the utilization of EXIM’s financial services. In short, we help customers purchase high-quality US made products on credit through EXIM’s registered platinum insurance broker Meridian Finance Group and the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM).
How did you get started exporting?
We’ve been moving product around internationally for about 4 years, but after signing distribution deals with some American manufacturers we wanted to explore exporting particularly in Latin America.
How many countries do you export to?
So far, we have exported to Mexico, Colombia, Belize, Panama, and Jamaica, and we hope to be in the Dominican Republic and other areas of LATAM in the near future.
How has EXIM helped your company solve export-related challenges?
So, there are plenty of credit worthy customers on the international market that simply can’t get credit in their country or from the country that they’re purchasing from. Through EXIM’s services we’re able to get them the credit that they need.
Our ability to offer credit:
- Helps our foreign buyers realize purchases that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to.
- Increases the volume that they can purchase and boosts their ROI
- Helps them retain liquidity while expanding their business.
This is in stark contrast to purchasing from other countries where buyers are often forced to pay cash upfront sometimes totaling hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars. What good is cheap product if you can’t buy it? Our product might be a tiny bit more expensive, but not only is it already in this hemisphere, but with a 15% deposit, we’ll have it on your doorstep in just a few weeks.
How has exporting affected your sales during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic?
It’s been a really nice booster. If you consider all of the constraints and complications currently affecting global supply chains, we’ve had a strong competitive advantage, exporting US made product to Latin America directly from the U.S. We have product already here in the US, and you don’t have to pay cash up front, pay $15-20k per container just to transport it, and then wait 6 weeks to get it. On top of that, if you consider the free trade agreements that we have with a number of these countries, the customer sees substantial savings.
EXIM has continued to support U.S. exporters like Kinect Solar, by reducing the risk of non-payment and offering credit terms to their foreign buyers. To learn more about Export Credit Insurance and receive a free consultation, click here.