Eric opens by giving listeners a little insight into his background. Eric was an investment banker with Merrill Lynch whose primary focus was energy and power. From there, he entered the private equity arena in which he focused on identifying underserved and undercapitalized markets to deploy more efficient vehicles.
Many of the companies they invested in during this time served as an inspiration for Dividend. The overall goal was to build a data-driven platform that can aggregate micro infrastructure real assets at a more efficient cost of acquisition.
After a few months of exploring this, Dividend diverged specifically towards solar due to the lower product cost and high return. Today, Dividend has lent more than $1 billion in funds since its inception and is the leading lender for home solar.
The two then go on to discuss the state of the commercial real estate industry after a year in the COVID crisis as lenders are tightening underwriting standards, imposing more stringent covenants, and reducing the amount of capital they are deploying towards any sort of commercial construction projects.
“In a rapidly growing industry, if these contractors really want to grow, and satisfy the demand they’re seeing in new markets, they need another [financing] solution, above and beyond the manufacturer and distributor [terms].” – Eric White, CEO of Dividend Finance