Have you wondered if an email was spam, almost deleted it, but realized just in time that it was the real deal and could add value to your company? That’s what happened when I received an inquiry from Chap Michie about Harvest Thermal participating in the Turner MIINT (MBA Investment and Impact Network & Training) competition. After doing a little research and learning they were from the Chicago Booth School of Business, I responded, and 3 months later I’m glad I did!
Over a series of Zoom calls, I collaborated with Chap and his teammates to position them to successfully compete against 35 other teams pitching Harvest Thermal’s clean home energy solution to a panel of distinguished investors. The team included Jahnvi Vaidya, Sneha Kasuganti, Tiana Pidgeon, and Isabel Rodriguez Garcia.
I provided them with market information, carbon reduction numbers and put them in touch with my lead hardware engineer, Evan Green, and Harvest’s lead investor–everything they needed to understand and communicate Harvest Pod’s value proposition in the marketplace..
I was impressed with how serious and knowledgeable they were. They ran their own financial model, came up with a smart investment thesis and developed a comprehensive deck. They did not take any shortcuts. Like any good impact entrepreneur, they were highly competitive and motivated by Harvest Thermal’s mission to dramatically reduce carbon emissions to advance the business.
Because of the team’s amazing analytic and presentation skills, I am proud to say Harvest Thermal won the $25,000 Moelis Family Prize as a runner-up in the MIINT competition. Give Chap and his team 10-15 years, and it’s easy to see each of them as a serial entrepreneur or GP at a venture fund. You can watch Isabel Rodriguez Garcia’s reaction to the award here.
The MIINT program is a collaboration between Bridges Impact Foundation and Wharton Social Impact Initiative and is designed to give business and graduate students a hands-on education in impact investing. The year-long experiential program provides students with the opportunity to integrate social and environmental impact into the investment process as they source and assess early-stage impact venture capital deals.
The judges for the 2021 Turner MIINT finals were Michele Giddens, co-founder and co-CEO at Bridges Fund Management; Lisa Hall, impact chairperson at Apollo Global Management; Eduardo Medeiros, president of 11 1/2 Holdings; Maddy Moelis, co-founder & board member at Great Jones; Sarah Morgenstern, venture partner at Flourish; Tasha Seitz, partner at Impact Engine; and Brian Walsh, head of impact at LiquidNet.
Harvest Thermal is an all-electric home heating and hot water solution that uses its proprietary controller to run a single, super-efficient heat pump in combination with a thermal battery. It shifts homeowners’ electricity consumption for heating and hot water to mid-day hours when the grid is cleanest and cheapest, dramatically reducing emissions while providing homeowners with constant, quiet heating and hot water.
Founded in 2019, Harvest Thermal will be deploying over 30 systems later this year with partners such as Franklin Energy and PCE.