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ModSolar’s Mike Dershowitz Leads the Way through “Start-Up Alley” at 2014 Solar Power International, October 20th to October 23rd in Las Vegas

Visit ModSolar at SPI Booth #2104

Ardmore, Pennsylvania – October 9, 2014 – Mike Dershowitz, co-founder and President of ModSolar, which is changing the solar industry by creating the software and processes that make the industry more efficient and effective, is the driving force behind Start-Up Alley, which returns for a second consecutive year to the roster of Solar Power International (SPI) the solar industry’s most powerful, comprehensive educational conference and product exhibition.

The 2014 edition of SPI will be held Monday, October 20th to Thursday, October 23rd at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“Last year, when I was planning on exhibiting ModSolar at SPI, I had realized that it is very difficult for small, start-up companies to get the exposure they need at a major industry trade show, and I began thinking about ways to help start-up companies in the solar industry that were in the same position we had been in a few years before,” said Dershowitz.

“So how does a start-up company that is growing fast, give back to other start-up companies,” Dershowitz said. “I approached the people behind the scenes at SPI about setting aside an area last year for start-up companies. My rationale was, at so many major industry events, finding the start-up companies with the innovative ideas is like looking for a needle in a haystack.  So with Start-Up Alley, we’ve put all the needles in one place.

“It was so successful last year, that this year we have our own dedicated space for Start-Up Alley, and ModSolar has been joined by Clean Energy Trust and the NV Energy Foundation to deliver a program dedicated exclusively to promoting up-and-coming     companies,”

Start-Up Alley, presented by SPI and supported by ModSolar, Clean Energy Trust, and the NV Energy Foundation, will be in its own pavilion in the Las Vegas Convention Center, on the Expo Floor in South Hall 1.  There are 20 companies slated to exhibit in Start-Up Alley this year.

[ModSolar has an exhibit booth of their own at SPI, Booth #2104, with a team from ModSolar including Dershowitz on hand to demonstrate their products and services.]

An addition to Start-Up Alley this year is the Start-Up Alley Challenge, where companies will pitch their business proposals to a panel of distinguished venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, corporate investors and business leaders. The Start-Up Alley Challenge will take place on Wednesday, October 22nd from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in South Hall 4.

One of the rising stars of the solar industry, ModSolar’s story began when Dershowitz recognized a gaping hole in the business processes of the solar industry.

While attending a home show in at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Center City Philadelphia with his wife in early 2011, Dershowitz was struck by the lack of sales technology being employed by the home improvement industry. After inviting a dozen or more solar installers in to discuss the details of solar for his own home (as an avid supporter of renewable energy), he continued to be surprised at how little sales technology was being used.

“At that show, I spoke to over a dozen solar installers about setting up something at my house,” Dershowitz said. “I’ve always been a supporter of renewable energy, but I just couldn’t believe how little sales and marketing technology these companies were using at that time.”

To guide the software development process, Dershowitz reached out to a friend, Kevin Ilsen. Ilsen spent 11 years at McKesson, the nation’s largest provider of products, software and services to the healthcare industry, where he most recently served as Chief Architect of the Horizon Clinical Professional Services team. During his years there, he had worked closely with many major hospitals developing interactive systems for their physicians, as wells as portals for cancer patients and those with chronic kidney disease.

In the summer of 2011, Dershowitz and Ilsen came up with prototype software, which they took to a local home show. The prototype enabled customers to see their house (through satellite images) with the layout features of solar panels on a computer screen for the first time. The prototype proved popular at the small home show, and the pair realized it was a product that was needed by the solar industry.

Both left their corporate jobs that fall, and started ModSolar, using a $3,500 cash advance on Dershowitz’s credit card. They quickly began adding customers, and refining the software, growing the platform and exhibiting their ModSolar software platform at industry events around the country throughout 2012 and 2013.

ModSolar’s platform is a cloud-based proposal generation system, which currently includes features
such as ModSolar’s patent-pending panel layout technology; energy usage and payback, which provides an instant analysis of customer return on investment; proposal generation; financing options; lead generation and qualification with lists of solar-ready homes with qualified owners; CRM integration; and custom software development.

Currently, $20 million per day in solar contracts are being generated through ModSolar’s software platform, representing an estimated five percent of the solar market in the United States. Hundreds of ModSolar users produce over 1,500 solar proposals each week. ModSolar’s corporate clients are major players in the solar industry including SunEdison, Enphase Energy, GAF, Hudson Solar and Southern Energy Management

Dershowitz and the team from ModSolar will be presenting their platform and services at SPI, the solar industry’s most powerful, comprehensive educational conference and product exhibition, Monday, October 20th through Thursday, October 23rd at the Las Vegas Convention Center.  ModSolar will be exhibiting in Booth #2104 with demonstrations and presentations throughout the conference.

About ModSolar:

ModSolar’s software lets solar providers produce solar proposals and contracts in less than five minutes, including placement of panels on an image of the prospect’s roof, as well as calculation of the return on the solar investment.  ModSolar develops software that dramatically reduces the “soft costs” involved in solar sales, solar system design, production of high-quality solar proposals, and the related paperwork surrounding solar installations.  Hundreds of ModSolar users currently produce over 1,500 solar proposals each week.  Additional information is available on ModSolar’s website at http://www.ModSolar.net, on the company’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/modsolarllc, and by following the company on Twitter at https://twitter.com/TheModSolar, as well as on ModSolar’s LinkedIn page and on Google+