In this episode of our Unwind With Boris video series, in which TNW CEO Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten speaks with Dutch entrepreneurs and innovators, Sungevity co-founder and mission leader Roebyem Anders shares her vision of a sustainable future.
It’s not often that you find a founder as enamored with his own product as Roebyem Anders is with solar panels. Not only has she dedicated her career to bringing them to rooftops; she also has a dress covered with solar panels.
Anders says she “fell in love” with the technology while on a business trip to Mexico. “I was there for one of my first solar energy projects. During my trip there was a large scale power failure. Within minutes, most of the buildings had their back-up generators on, creating that disgusting big brown cloud over the city. This is where it hit me: this country has so much space and so much sun, why are we allowing this to happen? “
Solar panels stuck with it. Anders co-founded solar panel company Zonline in 2014, which later became Sungevity. The company currently employs around 220 people.
After a brief stint as CEO (“I had to be the worst CEO in the world”), Anders decided his qualities were best served by becoming a chef de mission, spreading the solar gospel.
And things are going well, she said. In the Netherlands, 12.5% of households have solar panels on their roof. It may not sound like a lot, but Anders believes the tipping point – the point at which solar panels become mainstream technology – will be at 25%. It’s certainly an optimistic outlook, but Anders is a primarily optimistic person.
“I’ve been concerned about climate change for 25 years now, so I know how bleak the outlook is. But I think we can still turn the tide. Most of us seem to finally grasp the gravity of our situation, so now is the time to act. “
Watch the fourth episode of Unwind With Boris (top of the post) in which Roebyem Anders shares her vision for the future (hint: solar panels, everywhere), how to rebook flights without guilt and why she didn’t been cut from being CEO.
Watch previous episodes:
Relax with Boris: Episode 1 – with TNW CEO Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten and TNW media manager Anouk Vleugels.
Relax with Boris: Episode 2 – with Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten, CEO of TNW, and Jeroen Tas, innovation director of Philips.
Relax with Boris: Episode 3 – with TNW CEO Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten and Juuve CEO Niki Sie.
Relax with Boris brought to you by Polestar.
Published March 25, 2021 – 14:55 UTC