GET TO KNOW US

Powerhive is a technology venture founded in 2011 that partners with utilities and independent power producers to provide access to productive, affordable, and reliable microgrid electricity for millions of rural homes and businesses around the globe. Our proprietary technology platform and business model enables the financing, monetization, and management of distributed microgrid solutions. We are headquartered in Berkeley, CA.

Executive Team

Christopher Hornor
President & CEO
Rik Wuts
Co-founder & VP, business development
Steve Kraft
VP, engineering
Zachary Ayieko
Executive Chairman, Powerhive EA

Christopher Hornor

President & CEO
We're proud to be at the leading edge of solving one of the most important global development challenges.
Chris is an entrepreneur and recognized pioneer of consumer renewable energy product and services. During the last 15 years he has delivered renewable energy to more than two million people. As founder and CEO of Better Energy Systems he launched Solio, a portable solar charger that defined a new category of small-scale consumer energy solutions. In 2008 Chris led the expansion of Better Energy Systems into East Africa where he and his team introduced Club Solio, leveraging mobile money to create the first pay-as-you go renewable energy service for remote, off-grid regions. Chris has held senior posts at technology startups in the US, UK, and Japan where he identified and developed new revenue streams through emerging internet applications. He is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Rik Wuts

Co-founder & VP, business development
It is important to me that I contribute something of value to the world. At Powerhive I am pursuing my passion for technology and innovation while being part of a team that is addressing a meaningful cause.
During the last decade, Rik has focused on combining cutting-edge technology and innovative business models to deliver market solutions. Before co-founding Powerhive, Rik was the marketing director at Intivation where he helped introduce solar powered devices in more than 30 countries. He has also consulted several large companies and SMEs on product innovation and business strategy. Rik earned a BS in applied physics and an MS in product design from Delft University of Technology. Originally from Amsterdam, he currently lives in Nairobi and is leading the international expansion of Powerhive.

Steve Kraft

VP, engineering
I feel privileged to be helping create the technology that will address a major obstacle to rural economic development around the world.
Steve has nearly 20 years of experience developing hardware and firmware for embedded systems. He has developed solutions for a wide range of hard and soft real-time applications including industrial automation, remote monitoring, and renewable energy. Steve has also served as a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley, where he received a MS in Engineering.

Zachary Ayieko

Executive Chairman, Powerhive EA
Powerhive provides me with an opportunity to pursue my passion to empower rural communities through the provision of clean energy on an economically sustainable basis.
For most of his career, Zachary has worked in the finance department of Kenya Power. After nine years as chief manager of the department, he served as managing director and CEO. Among his achievements as CEO of Kenya Power, Zachary launched a far-reaching rural electrification initiative. The success of this initiative resulted in his appointment as CEO of Kenya’s Rural Electrification Authority where he helped deliver electricity to trading centers, schools, healthcare facilities, and homes through grid and renewable microgrid sources. Zachary has served as chairman of Rural Electrification Club, Africa and spends time helping various development groups improve their management practices.
Dan Porras
VP, Impact and Communications

Dan Porras

VP, Impact and Communications
We have a tremendous opportunity — and responsibility — to catalyze low-carbon development by empowering rural communities around the world.
Dan has over 15 years of experience in international development, renewable energy and media ventures. At Powerhive he works to ensure that our projects positively impact local communities, economies and our financial returns, while leveraging communications and media to increase uptake of our solutions to the global energy access challenge. Dan was an early SRI financial consultant at Piper Jaffray (acquired by UBS) where he crafted responsible investment portfolios for private clients and sold subscriptions to the first cleantech fund-of-funds in North America. He recently served as the Communications Officer for The Christensen Fund where he led the $250M foundation’s strategic communications initiatives in support of Indigenous communities around the world. He was previously the VP of Sustainability for Better Energy Systems where he worked with the CEO on strategy, marketing and social entrepreneurial applications in East Africa with Solio, one of the world’s first commercial micro-solar technologies. Dan received his Masters degree in environment and development from the London School of Economics and is an accomplished filmmaker and musician.

Board Members

Max Gardner
Board member
Christopher Hornor
President & CEO
John Lefebvre
Board member
Danny Kennedy
Board member

Max Gardner

Board member
Max serves as the Vice President of Corporate Development and Financial Planning at First Solar, where he has worked on the structuring, sale, and financing of over 3 GW of solar power plants valued at nearly $14 billion. He also serves as Vice President of Operations at 8point3 Energy Partners, the joint yieldco formed by First Solar and SunPower to own and operate a portfolio of solar generation assets. Prior to joining First Solar, Max was a strategy consultant at a boutique cleantech management consultancy, and he began his career with General Electric in a management rotation program and as an analyst in the renewable energy finance group. He received his MBA from Harvard Business School and his BS in Computer Science from the University of Southern California. Max currently serves on the board of directors for Clean Energy Collective, a leading U.S. community solar developer.

Christopher Hornor

President & CEO
We're proud to be at the leading edge of solving one of the most important global development challenges.
Chris is an entrepreneur and recognized pioneer of consumer renewable energy product and services. During the last 15 years he has delivered renewable energy to more than two million people. As founder and CEO of Better Energy Systems he launched Solio, a portable solar charger that defined a new category of small-scale consumer energy solutions. In 2008 Chris led the expansion of Better Energy Systems into East Africa where he and his team introduced Club Solio, leveraging mobile money to create the first pay-as-you go renewable energy service for remote, off-grid regions. Chris has held senior posts at technology startups in the US, UK, and Japan where he identified and developed new revenue streams through emerging internet applications. He is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara.

John Lefebvre

Board member
Currently, Mr. John Lefebvre serves as CEO of Cynergy Global LLC, a consulting and development company focused on renewable energy globally.  He has developed over 1,200 MW of Solar PV projects. Previously, he served as President of Suntech Power Holdings - Americas, and was charged with extending Suntech's market leadership position throughout North and South America.  Prior to Suntech, he served as VP of Sales and Business Development at SolarCity for 5 years and was responsible for growing all sales and building strategic partnerships. Mr. Lefebvre began his career in the aerospace division of GE before transitioning to the semiconductor equipment industry. At Lam Research and Mattson Technology, he held senior management positions working across Asia, Europe, and the US for 15 years. Mr. Lefebvre has a BSEE from Clarkson University, a MSEE from Syracuse University and an MBA from the UBC in Canada and ESADE in Barcelona, Spain.

Danny Kennedy

Board member
Danny Kennedy is co-founder of Sungevity, Inc. and leads the company's global business development activities. He helped create the Sungevity.org program, an integral component of the company's Solar Social strategy that has raised over $1.5 million for Sungevity's non-profit partners. Kennedy is an internationally recognized opinion leader on climate and energy issues. Prior to Sungevity, he managed Greenpeace Australia Pacific and their California Clean Energy Campaign. In 2012 Kennedy published Rooftop Revolution, How Solar Power Can Save Our Economy–and Planet–From Dirty Energy and in 2013 gave a TEDx talk at the Sydney Opera House about being an activist entrepreneur. Kennedy co-founded the SfunCube, the world's only incubator for solar entrepreneurs, in which Powerhive began. He is on the boards of startups Sunergise and Mosaic as well as non-profits VoteSolar and the Solar Foundation.
Tim Woodward
Board Member
Leonardo DiCaprio
Strategic advisor
Lord Gregory Barker
Strategic advisor

Tim Woodward

Board Member
As Managing Director of Prelude Ventures, Tim builds on over 25 years of venture capital investing experience working with talented entrepreneurs who want to change the world. Previously, Tim was a Managing Director for 15 years with Nth Power where he led investments in companies involved in renewable energy, demand response, advanced materials and outsourced utility customer management. He was the lead investment partner for that firm’s successful investments in Evergreen Solar (ESLR), Comverge (COMV) and Proton Energy Systems (DESC). Prior to entering the venture capital business, Tim was involved in the launch of First Source, a company providing industrial solvent recycling services. He received his MBA with honors from The Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA and his BS in Resource Economics from UC Berkeley in 1982. Tim currently serves on the board of directors for Allotrope, EnergySavvy, Heliotrope, MineSense and Powerhive, and he has oversight for Prelude Ventures' investments in Aquion and QuantumScape

Leonardo DiCaprio

Strategic advisor

Leonardo DiCaprio, award-winning actor, producer and activist, is well known for his dedication to protecting our environment on a global scale. In 1998, DiCaprio launched the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (LDF) to provide direct support for conservation and preservation projects on nearly every continent and in every ocean. Using his public platform, he has spearheaded global awareness campaigns and advocated on behalf of our natural world before global leaders at all levels. DiCaprio has also made strategic investments and produced numerous creative projects and documentaries to increase public engagement in the cause to end climate change.

Born in Hollywood, California, DiCaprio started acting at the age of 14.  His breakthrough feature film role came in 1993 with Michael Caton-Jones’ “This Boy’s Life.” That same year, he earned his first Academy Award® and Golden Globe nominations for his leading role in Lasse Hallström’s “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape.” Now a five-time Academy Award® nominee and Golden Globe winner, DiCaprio has produced and starred in many award-winning films – including Martin Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street”, Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby,” Quentin Tarantino’s “Django Unchained," Clint Eastwood’s “J. Edgar” and Christopher Nolan’s “Inception” to name a few. He most recently starred in “The Revenant” (2015) directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu. His portrayal of legendary explorer Hugh Glass won the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Motion Picture (Drama); Screen Actors Guild Award® for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role; Critics’ Choice Awards for Best Actor; and an Academy Award® for Best Actor in a Leading Role.

With his production company, Appian Way, DiCaprio wrote, produced and narrated the acclaimed environmentally themed documentary “The 11th Hour.”  Appian Way also partnered with Netflix to release “Virunga,” the Oscar® nominated documentary that examines gorilla preservation in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Virunga National Park.  Two additional environmentally themed Netflix documentaries titled “Catching the Sun” and “How to Change the World” are currently in post-production and slated for release in 2016.

In September 2014, DiCaprio was designated as a United Nations Messenger of Peace with a specific focus on climate change. That same month, DiCaprio was honored with the Clinton Global Citizen Award, participated in history’s largest climate march in New York City and powerfully addressed the UN Summit. In January 2016, DiCaprio was awarded a Crystal Award by the World Economic Forum in Davos for his work to bring global attention to the urgent need to address climate change. Leonardo also serves on the boards of World Wildlife Fund, Natural Resources Defense Council, National Geographic’s Pristine Seas, the funders’ collaborative Oceans 5, and International Fund for Animal Welfare.

Lord Gregory Barker

Strategic advisor
Rt Hon Lord Barker of Battle PC served as UK Minister of State for Energy & Climate Change from 2010 to 2014. He presided over the largest ever expansion of UK clean energy, seeing the percentage of renewable electricity on the grid rise from 6% to 18%. After training as a stockmarket analyst Lord Barker's City career spanned mergers & acquisitions, corporate finance, investor relations, the energy sector and private equity. Following the election of 2010 he was appointed Minister of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and was appointed to the Privy Council in 2012. His achievements at the DECC included the creation of the Green Investment Bank, a radical new approach to energy efficiency and a massive expansion of decentralised energy, including the deployment of 5GW of Solar PV, and panels on over 750k homes. He over saw the launch of the world first, Renewable Heat Incentive. He helped deliver the comprehensive reform of the UK electricity sector, which has created the world’s largest offshore wind programme. He pioneered UK “green” trade missions abroad and in addition to his role at DECC, served as Minister for Business Engagement with India from 2012 – 2014. Lord Barker took a lead international role mobilising private climate finance for developing countries. After Lord Barker stood down from Government in July 2014, he was appointed the Prime Minister’s envoy on Climate Change. He relinquished this formal role ahead of leaving the House of Commons in March 2015 to re-join the private sector. He now serves on the board of, and advises several major companies both at home and abroad. Lord Barker was appointed chair of the London Sustainable Development Commission by Mayor Boris Johnson in January 2015 and also joined the London Infrastructure Delivery Board. He is a trustee of the Climate Group, a member of the European board of the Environmental Defence Fund and a trustee of the board of De La Warr Pavilion.

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