Podcast on Hold in support of India Covid Relief Efforts - if you would like to support these efforts please donate to Mission Oxygen here!
Lessons From Fulbright Experience
Hi everybody! With all that is happening in India right now - in terms of the covid situation - The Fulbright ZENERGY Podcast is taking a small break
I would like to stand with those who are suffering in this pandemic and also be respectful to my guests who I often ask to share their respective episodes via social media at the time of release
Today I simply will be posting an episode of myself speaking to graduating students on the key lessons I learned through engaging in the Fulbright
Everybody take care - we will back soon - and if you would like to contribute to India’s covid efforts - am linking a place that people can donate to in my story. Thank you.
Manoj Kohli - Head of SoftBank India - Former CEO of Airtel
Manoj Kohli, the current head of SoftBank India and the former CEO of SoftBank Energy (SBE), was instrumental in enabling SBE to develop 5.5 GW of solar capacity in the Indian market. In this conversation Mr. Kohli shares the story behind what propelled SoftBank to invest in this market in 2015, and how the risks have evolved over the years. This conversation concludes with great guidance to the younger generation — developed from years of experience as a business leader and mentor for countless entrepreneurs.
Topics covered in this podcast:
[2:07] How will renewable energy shape India’s global leadership position in the next decade?
[3:55] When will energy storage become an affordable possible solution?
[6:35] How did the risks in the Indian renewable energy sector evolve from 2015 onwards?
[9:00] What role have foreign direct investments played in the development of RE industry in India?
[10:35] Which will be more difficult to attract, long-term debt, equity or short-term debt?
[11:53] What ultimately led SoftBank to invest in the solar sector in India in 2015?
[13:30] What are the focus areas of possible collaboration between India and the US?
[15:12] Guidance from Mr. Kohli to the younger generation
Hemant Sahai - Founder of HSA Advocates
Hemant Sahai, the founding partner of HSA Advocates, which is one of India’s leading and most active law firms in the renewable energy space. In this conversation, Mr. Sahai provides insight into how the energy landscape is evolving from a legal standpoint, and how the courts have responded to instances where discoms have renegaded from contract commitments. Hope you enjoy my conversation with Mr. Sahai!
Topics covered in this podcast:
[0:09] Mr. Sahai introduces himself and his involvement in the energy sector in India
[5:35] The context around DISCOMs and their delay of payments to renewable generators
[13:21] What is happening with subsidies and will there be a switch to direct transfers from the State to the consumer instead of payments through a DISCOM?
[18:00] Will renewable energy be a great vehicle for India to improve is leadership position in the world and are Indian solar companies competitive on a global scale?
Sidharath Kapur - CEO of Acme Solar Holdings (2020)
Sidharath Kapur is the recent CEO of Acme Solar, which is India’s largest utility scale solar development company. In this conversation Mr. Kapur discusses renewable energy financing in India — beginning with an assessment of how much investment is required to achieve India's renewable energy targets. In this conversation Mr. Kapur breaks down a key challenge in the India solar market, which is the deficiency of long term debt financing at attractive rates. Mr. Kapur concludes by introducing a proposed concept of renewable financing obligations, which could be the key for sustaining this industry over the long term.
Topics covered in the on this podcast:
[02:05] What are India's targets for renewable energy for the next years?
[3:57] Investment requirements needed to reach these targets
[5:32] What are the key sectoral challenges that need to be overcome?
[8:30] What is the problem with transmission infrastructure?
[10:19] What are the key hesitations for lenders?
[15:00] Is there significant international investment coming in?
[19:30] Mr. Kapoor's introduction of the renewable power financing obligation
[25:31] Will India remain and further become a leader in the solar sector?
Ashish Khanna - President of Tata Power - Renewables
One quick note - we had some wifi connectivity issues for the first ten minutes or so - please bear with us, as the insights shared by Mr. Khanna are too good to miss. I highly recommend you listen to this audio with headphones - and then everything should smoothen out after the ten minute mark or so. Thank you and hope you enjoy!
Ashish Khanna is the President of Tata Power - Renewables, which is now India’s largest integrated power company, that has helped transform the Indian electricity landscape. In this conversation, Mr. Khanna expresses his insight into the hurdles that the solar energy sector has yet to overcome to hit its potential, as well as the potential areas for US-India partnership in the sustainable energy sector. Mr. Khanna also provides advice to the younger generation on entrepreneurial opportunities in this space, and I hope you enjoy this conversation with Mr. Ashish Khanna!
Topics covered on this podcast:
[2:16] Future of Solar Energy: facts on Indian electricity statistics over the coming decades and why solar is well-positioned to tap into this, plus the obstacles that the industry must overcome
[12:50] Where are the entrepreneurial opportunities for new companies in the renewable sector in India
[19:58] What insight would Mr. Khanna give to the younger generation?
[21:56] Could there be a potential US-India partnership in the renewable energy sector?
Anand Shah - Co-Founder of Ola Electric
Mr. Anand Shah is the co-founder of Ola Electric, which is India’s largest electric vehicle company. As a leader on the Ola Electric team, Anand Shah helped formulate Ola Electric’s Mission Electric initiative, which seeks to put 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2021. Through this interview, we explore Mr. Shah's perspective on social entrepreneurship, the importance of energy storage and how EVs and renewable energy will shape India in the decade to come. Hope you enjoy my conversation with Mr. Shah!
Topics covered in this podcast:
[2:24] Key learnings from interviewing 2000 people as a BMW executive, on the future of mobility
[7:49] Which social entrepreneurship qualities are pivotal according to Mr. Shah?
[11:34] Is the entrepreneurial problem solving process linear or exponential?
[13:14] What led Mr. Shah into social entrepreneurship?
[15:39] What was his role in Ola Electric’s vision “Mission Electric”?
[19:28] Importance of a combination of both clean energy generation and storage capacity
[22:01] What are Mr. Shah’s views on battery swapping?
[24:34] Will renewable energy and electric vehicles serve as a platform to help more firmly establish India's leadership position on the world stage?