Ahmed was inspired to create TerraX when his friend called him with a question about utility-scale solar. His friend's uncle had received a bid in the mail from a solar project developer to lease part of his farmland for a solar project, and he was not sure what would be a fair price for the land lease. Ahmed and his friend did some research to find comparison points online but could not find any. This was the genesis for TerraX.
What it does
TerraX is an exchange that connects land owners with solar and wind developers. Land owners can place part of the acreage of their farm on the platform and receive bids from multiple solar and wind project developers looking to lease land for project development.
How we built it
Challenges we ran into
Two challenges we ran into include: 1) disintermediation and 2) licensing as a broker. Regarding 1) we do not want to be circumvented by the developer and the installer; that would hurt our revenues. We plan to manage that risk by only charging landowners when we can receive a bid that's premium to their minimum threshold, incentivizing them to work with us. We also plan to use a non-circumvention agreement with developers who join the platform. 2) We may need to be licensed as brokers to operate; we plan to pursue that licensing when executing on the business plan.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are proud and excited to share the functional MVP we've developed today. We are also excited by the market potential.
What we learned
We learned that there is a tremendous amount of farmland available for solar and wind project development; far more than enough to meet the Clean Power Plan.
What's next for Land Lease Marketplace
We plan to talk to farmers and project developers to seed our platform.