Stansell Electric Company, Inc.

Adding solar services to an existing contracting business

For many companies in the contracting industry, adding solar to their existing business is an attractive option. As the cost of grid-supplied electricity continues to rise, and environmental and political issues surrounding its generation are of increasing concern, more home-owners, businesses, and public institutions are looking to solar as a clean, renewable, cost-effective and secure alternative. Meanwhile, solar technology is evolving at a rapid pace, and costs continue to fall. These favorable market conditions lead many to seriously consider getting into the solar business.

Thinking about offering solar, however, is one thing. Actually doing it is another. Taking advantage of VeriSol’s extensive industry knowledge and experience can result in substantial cost savings to a business planning on entering the industry by shortening the learning curve and a helping to avoid many common mistakes. A consulting relationship with VeriSol can often mean the difference between a long, slow and costly process with a lengthy return on investment, and one that is smooth, efficient, rapidly deployed and profitable.

Stansell Electric’s New Solar Division

When James N. Stansell, Sr. founded his company his company in 1940 as a fledgling startup in his garage in Nashville, Tennessee, solar energy was more concept than reality. In fact, the first silicon solar cell wasn’t even invented until a year later, and it wasn’t until the 1950’s that Bell Labs would make practical use of the technology with the Bell Solar Battery.

Fast forward to 2010. Solar energy had become one of the fastest growing sectors in the economy, and Stansell Electric, Inc. had become a leading provider of quality electrical contracting and related services with its 25,000 sq. corporate headquarters located in downtown Nashville.

For Stansell, recognizing the potential of solar was easy. The TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority) had recently begun a rebate program, and the cost of equipment was falling at a rapid rate. There was just one problem: nobody at the company had any solar expertise from either a technology or business standpoint. Stansell, however, was undaunted by the challenge. After all, the company had a long and proud history of success adapting to new technologies and industry trends dating back to the dawn of data and digital communications that began in the 1980s.

To get its solar division started, the company decided to take advantage of a state funded grant program to install a 200 kW system at its own facility, with the intention of using the project as a means of training for its new business venture. Not long after embarking on the journey, Stansell quickly, (and wisely) realized they needed help, and turned to VeriSol to get it.

For Stansell, VeriSol CEO John Whisman’s experience as an electrical contractor proved to be invaluable. He knew their business, which gave him the unique ability and foresight necessary to address the company’s concerns. Over the course of a two day customized training session, VeriSol was able to provide the vital knowledge and understanding Stansell needed to get its solar division started on the right track. Presentations covered everything the company needed to know to be successful in the solar business, including solar technology options, installation methods, procedures and electrical code requirements, financing options, and how to value and sell solar. Above all, VeriSol was able to ultimately provide Stansell with the confidence the company needed to be successful in the solar business.