Tendril, which focuses on providing consumer-centric energy services with software and analytics, named David Tuohy as senior VP and GM of the firm’s European operations. Prior to Tendril, Tuohy was operating partner at private equity fund Hudson Clean Energy Partners. European utility Engie is an investor in Tendril.  

Micah Myers, most recently the senior VP of revenue at Clean Power Finance, has left to join Empresa Brasileira de Energia Solar, a leading solar project developer in Brazil, as its director. Earlier, as a principal at Claremont Creek Ventures, Myers was an investor in CPF.

Sean Zhang has been promoted to deputy GM of Atieva China. Atieva started out in 2007 as a battery-pack developer with a founder from Tesla and VC funding from Venrock, but the company has since pivoted to operating as a stealth EV effort in Silicon Valley and China.

Atieva timeline:

  • 2007: Founded as a battery-pack developer by Bernard Tse, former Tesla VP, and Sam Weng, founder of Astoria Networks
  • 2007: Initial funding from Venrock and China Environment Fund   
  • 2009: $7 million round B from Beijing’s China Environment Fund and Venrock
  • 2011: $24 million round C with investment from Mitsui & Co. and Jafco Ventures
  • 2011: Working with lithium-ion cell maker Lishen to build battery packs for EV buses in China
  • 2014: Secured $100 million of a $200 million round from investors. According to reports, BAIC, a state-owned carmaker, acquired a 25 percent stake in Atieva. Reports indicate that Chinese internet company Leshi also invested in Atieva (as well as in Faraday Future).

Atieva is advertising openings for many dozens of hardware and software engineers.   

Abengoa's CEO, Santiago Seage, resigned last week upon news that the Spanish renewable energy behemoth was near bankruptcy -- threatening 29,000 jobs in what could be Spain's largest-ever corporate failure.

First Solar's CEO, James Hughes, has joined the board of directors of TPI Composites, a U.S.-based manufacturer of composite wind turbine blades and structural composite products for the transportation market. Prior to First Solar, Hughes served as CEO of AEI Services. Previously, he served as president and COO of Prisma Energy International, which was formed out of former Enron interests in international electric and natural-gas utilities. Prior to that role, Hughes spent almost a decade with Enron. 

We noticed that former SunEdison VP Zeina El-Azzi joined project developer and IPP Blue Earth as senior VP of corporate development. PV Magazine noticed that Blue Earth had also brought on former Recurrent Energy Chief Legal Officer Judith Hall, who will serve as the company's as Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel. "John Knight, formerly of Tradewind Energy, will also join as VP of Business Development, and Blue Earth has hired Peter Defazio as VP of Mergers and Acquisitions and Project Finance, from NRG Renew." Blue Earth president Bob Powell previously served as president of SunEdison and CFO of PG&E. 

Robyn Beavers joined NRG Energy in 2013 with some fanfare -- the senior VP had a Google pedigree and was "founder and leader of the newly formed Station A Group, a microgrid skunk works within the power company. NRG has confirmed to GTM that Beavers left the company in September, but that Station A "will continue to focus on forward-thinking distributed, controllable clean energy solutions that it will develop and implement directly and in collaboration with NRG." Station A has installed a microgrid at its Potrero Generating Station headquarters, as well as a 75 percent renewable microgrid on Richard Branson's Necker Island.


Enertech Search Partners, an executive search firm with a dedicated cleantech practice, is the sponsor of the GTM jobs column, and the author of a recent blog post, Surviving the Smart Grid Hiring Crunch. 

To see a snapshot of Enertech's active searches, click here.


SolarCity is expanding in Nevada with a new 13,000-square-foot regional training center in West Las Vegas. This is SolarCity's fifth facility since entering Nevada in 2013, and the company is expected to train as many as 4,000 workers a year. SolarCity already employs over 2,000 Nevadans.

According to West Coast Clean Economy: 2010-2014 Jobs Update North America’s West Coast (PDF), California had 368,200 clean economy jobs as of 2014, a 24 percent increase since 2010. Washington added 8,230 clean economy jobs for a total of 92,658. Oregon added 4,800 clean economy jobs for a total of 48,321.

From last week's jobs column:

SunEdison, the shrinking renewable energy development company, shifted its current chairman of the board, Emmanuel Hernandez, to the role of executive chairman. Peter Blackmore stepped down from the SunEdison board to join TerraForm Power and TerraForm Global as chairman of the board at both firms. Steven Tesoriere resigned from the boards of TerraForm Power and TerraForm Global, but will stay on the SunEdison board.

Brian Wuebbels, SunEdison's EVP and CFO, will assume the additional roles of CEO of TerraForm Power and TerraForm Global, succeeding Carlos Domenech, who is leaving TerraForm Power, TerraForm Global and SunEdison.

Avondale Partners views the management changes as "a crucial first step in acknowledging strategy missteps that have placed the entire complex in a position of financial stress; the operators are taking back the reins from the bankers."

SolarCity promoted COO Tanguy Serra to the new role of president, reporting to CEO Lyndon Rive. The installer/financier also announced that CFO Brad Buss is to retire in 2016. Serra will continue to oversee SolarCity's operations, and has assumed management of SolarCity's structured finance, asset management and investor relations units. Prior to joining SolarCity, Serra served as CEO of Vivint Solar, and before that, he was a VP at TPG Capital.