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SoloPower Names Paolo Pietrogrande to Board of Directors and Bart Van Ouytsel as Head of Sales in Europe, Middle East, and Africa

published: 2012-06-28 14:49

SoloPower, the San Jose, California-based manufacturer of high efficiency, lightweight and flexible thin-film solar cells and modules, has appointed Paolo Pietrogrande as a member of its Board of Directors and Bart Van Ouytsel to lead sales in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA). Mr. Pietrogrande was approved on June 13, and Mr. Van Ouytsel started in his role on June 1.

Veterans of the solar energy and renewables space, Mr. Pietrogrande and Mr. Van Ouytsel add expertise and experience to SoloPower’s mission to make rooftop solar the main energy source for the world’s commercial and industrial buildings. The new additions come after SoloPower launched its next-generation of integrated solar solutions at Intersolar Europe in Munich, Germany, one of the largest solar industry exhibitions in the world. SoloPower’s first-of-their-kind easy installation systems are designed to make SoloPower’s SoloPanels perform optimally and to be integrated into a variety of roof systems across geographies. SoloPower’s integrated solar solutions address rooftops that cannot bear the weight of heavier, traditional panels while expanding the global solar rooftop market.

“It’s a really exciting time for SoloPower, with Paolo and Bart joining our team, the recent introduction of our next generation of solar solutions, and hiring for the high volume manufacturing facility we’re preparing to open in Portland, Oregon,” said Tim Harris, CEO, SoloPower. “Paolo’s extensive experience in utilities, in renewable power generation, and in managing international manufacturing companies will help us make solar energy possible for any rooftop in the world. And Bart’s global expertise in the solar energy and building materials industries are just what we need to continue our customer growth.”

Mr. Pietrogrande is Chairman of Element Power Solar, a developer that put 77MW in operation and has 2800MW of pipeline in North America, Latin America, Europe, and other emerging markets. In his past positions, he supervised the development and operation of over 4000MW of renewable energy projects around the world, including 200MW of solar power plants. He has 31 years of experience in alternative energy and corporate management, is a founding partner of Netplan Management Consulting, and has held leadership and executive positions in companies such as Enel, Gamesa Solar, General Electric, Bain, and KTI. He joins the SoloPower Board of Directors just three months after General Wesley K. Clark (USA, Retired), former NATO Supreme Allied Commander, Europe and a former U.S. Presidential candidate, was appointed to SoloPower’s Board of Directors as an independent director.

“SoloPower has developed the most compelling approach, technology, and manufacturing capability to address a unique solar market need,” said Mr. Pietrogrande, who currently sits on the boards and advisory committees of other public companies. “I’m honored to be working closely with the SoloPower team and its dedicated board that provides critical leadership and support to the company. Together, we’re on a path to make solar the primary source of energy for the world’s commercial and industrial buildings.”

SoloPower’s proprietary approach embodies critical technology, manufacturing, and cost advantages that enable large-scale “fab-style” production of high-efficiency CIGS-based photovoltaic cells. The CIGS cells are then packaged into unique, flexible, lightweight solar modules that require less balance-of-system hardware and are easier to install than traditional solar panels.

A seasoned professional in alternative energy management, Mr. Van Ouytsel most recently served as Vice President of European Sales and Marketing for EMEA at Solar Integrated, an Energy Conversion Devices company. Over a seven-year period, Mr. Van Ouytsel had profit and loss and sales responsibility for $40 million in annual revenue.

“SoloPower is paving the way for the future of solar energy around the globe, and I’m looking forward to being a part of the company’s continued growth as we expand the possibilities of solar integration,” said Mr. Van Ouytsel, who is fluent in Dutch, German, English, and French. “We see great opportunity in Italy, Japan, the U.S., and around the world.”

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