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Solar Trillions: 7 Market and Investment Opportunities in the Emerging Clean-Energy Economy Paperback – January 28, 2010

4.4 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Tony Seba is a Silicon Valley serial entrepreneur in cleantech and high tech, a lecturer in entrepreneurship and clean energy at Stanford University, a keynote speaker, and the author of "Winners Take All - 9 Fundamental Rules of High Tech Strategy". Seba has taught "Clean Energy - Market and Investment Opportunities", "Strategic Marketing of High Tech and Cleantech", "Finance for Entrepreneurs, Marketing, Engineers" and "Business and Revenue Models Innovation". He also teaches at Singularity University and top business schools around the world such as The Auckland University (New Zealand) Business School and in-company at some of the world's top high tech companies such as Google, Inc. Tony Seba brings 20+ years of solid operating experience in fast-growth high technology companies. He was Vice President, Corporate Development at "Utility Scale Solar, Inc." where he helped the company grow from the garage-stage through growth strategy, fundraising, business development with plant developers and partners. He was previously founder and CEO of PrintNation.com, a B2B ecommerce site which he established as the undisputed leader in its market segment, winning such top industry awards as the Upside Hot 100 and the Forbes.com B2B 'Best of the Web'. Seba led two venture capital rounds raising more than $31 million in funding from well-known silicon valley venture funds, hired a complete management team, 100+ employees, and managed the development of strategic partnerships with some of the world's top companies. Prior to PrintNation, Mr. Seba worked in business development and strategic planning at Cisco Systems and RSA Data Security. Seba has been responsible for the architecture, development, strategy, or commercialization of more than two dozen products including solar technology, mobile browser, Java security, electronic payment technology and ecommerce infrastructure. Seba speaks frequently at clean energy, clean tech, entrepreneurship and high tech conferences and industry and corporate events. He has been featured in Business Week, Investors Business Daily, Forbes, Fast Company, Success and other media and holds entrepreneurship awards. Seba is on boards of directors and boards of advisors of high tech, educational and non-profit organizations. Tony Seba holds an M.B.A. from Stanford University Graduate School of Business and a B.S. in Computer Science and Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. http://www.tonyseba.com
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 292 pages
  • Publisher: Tony Seba (January 28, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615335616
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615335612
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #334,830 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By S. Gordon on September 14, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The overviews of the various energy industries are clear, the projections are rational, the comparisons conservative (i.e., definitely not skewing data toward the alternative energy fields). The conclusion - that solar energy is the only industry that -can- fill the demand for energy - is logical... and wowing, given that we're continually led to believe that it's simply being humored and isn't -capable- of being a big player. While dirty fuel industries work to make people -think- that photovoltaic panels are the only option and that there aren't batteries capable of storing power when the sun doesn't shine and so this can't possibly work... mega "mirrorized" solar installations are successfully collecting electric power and storing it in huge underground liquid salt "batteries" overnight - and serving large populations near -and- far. Wish Seba would update this 2010 book just so I'd know what -more- has happened since then - but he proves that alt-energy can and -is- working, even -without- all the govt. subsidies given to support the dirty energy industries that continue to pollute our communities. An -excellent- and heartening book.
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I enjoyed the book. It was easy to read, contained a wealth of facts, and set down a road map for anyone looking for an express lane toward our energy future. However, Tony Seba illustrates why green energy, although common sense in many respects, gets shunned by the broader populace: he sprinkles politics into much of what he writes. That detracts and distracts from the solid point, generally, that solar energy is, and will be, the world's energy future, and the opportunities in the industry are, and will be, vast. Again, this is just common sense, but peoples' aversion to politics stains the truth of it.

Also, I think Mr. Seba makes another classic mistake of the green energy movement - minimizing, or even overlooking, the value of petroleum in non-energy industries. As I sit at my desk and see pens, phones, a computer, a Starbucks coffee cup with a plastic top, a bottle of Tylenol, reading glasses, and so forth - ALL of these things require petroleum products in the manufacture. Energy is just one component of our need for oil, and until someone can figure out a better way to manufacture all of these things without crippling the world economy, there's no choice but to drill it and refine it all. Every ounce.

In the coming years, I hope to make a small fortune in the solar industry. I'll thank Tony Seba, Stanford University, and a handful of others for their assistance. The book is a great choice for anyone, whether you're interested in the solar industry or not. My own enthusiasm was tempered for the points I note above.
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Format: Paperback
Solar Trillions is an eye-opening work that evaluates the various clean-energy opportunities using a helpful framework to assess their overall attractiveness. The author does a fine job sizing each market opportunity in an intuitive way.

Here are three items I found particularly interesting:
- "Solar power . . . would need less than one-tenth (8.1% to be exact) of the land space requirements of the oil and gas industries to generate all our electricity needs." - Tony Seba, Solar Trillions, p. 18.
- The patchwork nature of our deteriorating grid presents serious challenges to our global competitiveness and represents a tremendous opportunity for the companies that become the Ciscos and GEs of the new grid.
- The plight of the millions of people that lack fresh water and rely on kerosene to cook and power their modest homes was eye-opening. It's fantastic to know that low cost, solar alternatives exist to dramatically raise the quality of these people's lives.
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In one of the most depressing times in U.S. and global financial history, Tony Seba's Solar Trillions presents a ray of hope. (No pun intended. ;o)

In a straight forward and entertaining manner, Seba lays out the trillion dollar - and trillion kWh - opportunity presented by the broad spectrum (sorry, another pun) of solar innovation, both for the developed world (think residential, commercial, industrial, military...) and the off-the-grid developing world - where millions of people have never even had electricity and many rely on dangerous, costly, and toxic kerosene lanterns just so their kids can do their school work at night.

At a time when young solar companies are being forced to jump through hoops and come up with creative financing schemes to prove out their business models, and with the chips stacked against them due to a lack of meaningful support from a government that is still subsidizing one of the most profitable and environmentally destructive industries on the planet - Seba cleanly lays out the trillion dollar opportunities in solar in such a "no brainer" way that even the most die hard skeptics would be hard pressed to deny them.

Solar Trillions is the solar bible for both solar enthusiasts and anyone who still doubts the potential of how properly harnessing solar power will change our world for the better.

If you are wondering what sector of our economy the next Google or Apple is going to come from, read this book!
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