David Pijuan

Country Manager Jamaica, Sofos

Sofos is a Spanish company based near Barcelona that started working on renewable energy in 2004. From 2004-2008, the market grew exponentially in Spain. We also enjoyed government subsidization, which allowed us to thrive. After 2008, the government cut these subsidies and the solar market declined drastically. At this point, we decided to expand into new product lines and expand internationally. Many Spanish solar companies were expanding into different markets, and we saw a great deal of opportunity in the Caribbean. We originally expanded into the Dominican Republic because we had some links there. While there, one of our clients in the hospitality sector asked us to study which of its Caribbean hotels would be the most feasible in terms of installing solar. After studying the different markets, we realized that Jamaica offered the most benefits. This was one of the main avenues through which we discovered Jamaica and one of the main reasons we are here today. Since then we have expanded significantly.


Jason Robinson

CEO, Solar Buzz Jamaica

I saw an opportunity to start Solar Buzz Jamaica in order to go up against a monopoly, the Jamaica Public Service Company Limited (JPS). The venture was also about my desire to help the environment. Around 2010, energy prices were out of control in Jamaica; oil was at USD100 a barrel, and the national grid here had been neglected for a long time. There was an energy crisis, and everyone was trying to find solutions. I thought people would embrace solar power, but we ran up against a great deal of resistance due to the JPS monopoly, limited public knowledge, and high costs. Initially, we had to focus on energy efficiency by supplying energy monitors that show users' real-time energy usage. Solar Buzz got the exclusive distributorship for the Owl energy monitors, which we placed in homes and businesses. That along with media coverage put us on the map. By 2014, the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) came along with financing and more people started using solar power.


Robert Wright

Managing Director, New Leaf Power

New Leaf Power is a pioneering green energy company known for innovation and leadership. We are advocates for energy reform and new legislation. Although we are a small, new company, we have made a difference in exposing Jamaica to new ways of doing business and financing renewable energy and energy-efficiency projects. We have also broadened the kinds of clean air technologies that should be considered in Jamaica. These are mainly solar, wind, and hydro; however, we have expanded that to include geothermal and ocean thermal in particular. We are among a few clean tech companies in the Caribbean that are doing exhaustive work in the ocean thermal space. That is a big part of the blue economy, which is huge, and Jamaica is an archipelago with a great maritime tradition. There are several areas in which we have been pioneers. One is advocating for new legislation and programs to liberalize environmental law to boost competition. We provide a lot of leadership there. And in terms of innovation, we have brought new technology that is being proven around the world.


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