Solar Company

Background

  • A VC-backed chemical engineering company developing innovative approaches to recover valuable silicon from waste
  • Founder/CEO was technically competent but lacked people- and operational-management skills, needed to stabilize and grow company
  • Investors concerned that technical team might disperse and company would lose momentum
  • Investors moved founder to CTO role and engaged KPCG to provide interim CEO, providing business leadership, operational management and consistent leadership of staff

Mandate

  • Culture change management and interim CEO role

Activity

  • Provided leadership to technical team and interfaced with founder to maximize effectiveness in CTO role
  • To allow CTO to focus on technical commitments made to investors, KPCG provided CEO outward-facing functions, including :
    • investor communications and status reporting
    • handling external legal issues
    • interfacing with external business consultants
    • Developed business plan to support upcoming new round of fundraising for next growth phase
    • Provided hand-off to new (permanent) CEO

Results

  • Investors happy to achieve a stabilizing influence resident at company laboratories
  • One team member had resigned prior to engagement and another was very dissatisfied.  Both staff members were retained and became supportive during KPCG’s involvement
  • Founder had committed to meeting challenging goals for Si purificaton (6N purity from silicon kerf) that team had already failed to deliver on time – but met after engaging KPCG.  The team has since produced product of 7N purity.
  • Business planning and operational changes laid foundation for introduction of new CEO