Powerhouse is a nexus of early stage solar, storage, and data analytics software investors. From small Bay Area angels to Silicon Valley VCs, our capital partners trust us to bring them the next greatest deal. For our network of investors, it’s not if they should invest in new energy, but who’s next. While you’ll definitely meet investors by being in the Incubator, if you want warm intros with our credibility to back you up, apply to the Accelerator.
The question really is, what kinds of energy events don’t happen at Powerhouse? From SunCode Hackathon promoted by industry leaders such as Sunrun and GE Ventures, to intense investor speed dating with VCs including Obvious Ventures and Emergence Capital during Powerhouse Circle at Intersolar, to New Dawn, our epic annual solar+ party sponsored by industry giants like SolarCity and SunPower.
Because that’s what the new energy industry is and that’s what our entrepreneurs are.
Powerhouse is in the heart of Oakland’s vibrant Uptown district. Our address is 426 17th Street Suite 700 - steps above the 19th Street BART station.
Powerhouse is less than 20 steps from BART - depending on how you walk. We have secure bike parking in our basement along with a bike repair station flush with tools and a pump. There are even showers. Street parking and garages are available around the office for about $8-20/day.
Powerhouse has 14,707 square feet of LEED certified office digs spanning the top three floors of our beautiful, century old building. We can see City Hall, Lake Merritt, Cal Berkeley’s campus, the Bay Bridge and the Golden Gate bridge from our windows.
Powerhouse has invested in an enterprise-grade gigabit internet, with Cisco wireless access points providing great wifi throughout the office, and dual redundant internet connections providing fast and reliable connectivity. With built-in security enhancements and proactive monitoring, we empower our startups to safely build world-changing new energy businesses.
Hydraulic desks for those who like to stand and work. We made our solar panel conference room tables ourselves using crowbars and gorilla glue. We work on 'solar' while we work on intelligent energy solutions. Some desks are shared and are available on a first come first serve basis each day.
We keep small offices available as meeting rooms when you need some privacy. We also have a large conference room in the penthouse. There are a limited number of private offices. Contact [email protected] for availability.
You’re an entrepreneur. You need access 24/7 and we give it to you.
Shared kitchen stocked with unlimited coffee, tea, and healthy snacks. Rooftop deck with BBQ that have made for many fun events.
Yes, contact [email protected] for details.
Powerhouse has a collaborative culture. Competitors are welcome if they are willing to share the space.
Powerhouse runs two 6 month cohorts a year. One from January through June and one from July through December.
Our cash investment is small but the investment we make via our network is huge. The cold hard cash is $10k, but the value Powerhouse brings is in the connections we make for your business. From intros to angels and VC’s, customers, and talent, our investment isn’t about the check, it’s about you.
Following a three-month probationary period and subject to certain conditions, Powerhouse will invest $10,000 and reserve the right to invest up to a total of $250,000 in exchange for a convertible note and warrant. The convertible note will automatically convert, at a discount, into shares of the company’s preferred stock issued in the company’s preferred stock financing. The number of shares and the purchase price of the shares will depend on the terms of such financing. The note may also be converted or repaid at maturity.
The warrant will be exercisable for a number of shares of the company’s preferred stock equal to 5% of the company’s outstanding capital stock immediately following the company’s preferred stock financing or, if the company does not have a preferred stock financing before an exit event, then the warrant will be exercisable for a number of shares of the company’s common stock equal to 5% of the company’s outstanding capital stock as of the date of issuance of the warrant. The purchase price for the preferred stock will be equal to the price per share of such shares of preferred stock and the purchase price for the common stock will be equal to the par value per share of the common stock.
Please note that the above is intended to be a summary of the terms. Upon your acceptance into the program, we'll provide you with the form of note and warrant for your review. Such agreements will supersede anything contained herein.
No, and most angels and VC’s won’t. However, we won’t share what you submit with anyone other than our Selection Committee.
No. Just follow the application process which includes a deck, financial model, and if we like that, an in person interview.
The value of Powerhouse is not just in who we introduce you to, but also in our time together. We meet with every Accelerator startup every week. The purpose of the weekly meeting is to strategize and push progress. Intros to the right people are done post meeting based on what you need that week. Additionally, we arrange bi-monthly workshops with industry executives and investors monthly 1:1 office hours with experts in residence.
Yes, the value is being here.
Powerhouse puts startup founders first when we’re reviewing applications. We know your business model is going to change in the 6 months that you’re with us. We care more about you as a person and how you will lead your company than we do your current product and projected market share. In entrepreneurs we look for innovation, leadership, and grit. Ideally you have a cofounder or two, including a technical founder.
We’ve invested in startups that had one person and startups that had 20. Our sweet spot is pre-seed or seed rounds and tend to be 2-3 on staff when they join the Accelerator.
Depends on what you want from Powerhouse and how much you will need to raise. If you want connections to customers and capital, then go for it. Our value is not in the small cash investment we make, but the network we make available to you.
Powerhouse is most interested in software, storage, and data solutions (solar+) that help spread solar to the masses. Hardware and software combos are welcome to apply but we won’t evaluate straight hardware plays as it’s not our area of expertise.
We accept a very limited number of startups each year. The caliber of companies that have been accepted so far have set a high bar. There is often not anything particularly wrong with your application, but rather, we are comparing potential success with potential success. Don’t let it stop you from proving us wrong.
Powerhouse accepts accelerator applicants twice per year. Cohorts run from January to June and from July to December.
You can find instructions on how to submit your application under our 'Accelerator' page or by clicking here .
Our commitment is to the startups we’ve accepted into the Accelerator. We focus our time and resources on their needs.
Our focus is on the companies that we’ve accepted into the Accelerator.
Our entrepreneurs are heads down building their businesses and we want them to be as focused as possible so we don’t take walk-ins. That said, connect with us first if you want to come by. Contact [email protected]