I was invited to speak at the global Entrepreneurs Organisation conference in Tokyo last week. What a privilege to meet 450 people who are all up to something. This is a group of people committed to making a difference and I was fascinated by the amount of conversation about global warming, and how it is up to us to do something about it.
I would classify at least one of the participants as a serial entrepreneur. Peter Sage wouldn’t be much more than 40 and already he has started, purchased and sold 22 businesses. He is the sort of guy that sees opportunity everywhere and anywhere.
His current project is bigger and more exciting than probably any other entrepreneurial endeavour I’ve heard of in a long time. He is only trying to raise $US10 billion and in so doing could change how we consume fossil fuels on the planet forever.
It was pretty funny when sipping a cocktail and asking the obvious question: “So tell me a bit about your business.”
“Well,” Peter responds, “I am co-founder of the Space Island Group. We are in the process of commercialising NASA technology that will put solar panels into space in 2010, and by 2012 we will be sending 43 million kilowatts of power to Earth at only 10¢ per kilowatt. (The cheapest currently delivered is 23¢.)
I’ve met hundreds of entrepreneurs, and I believe common threads with the most successful is that they have purpose and vision. Peter and his scientist colleagues have a very big vision. It is truly humbling to think that in our lifetime fossil fuels could be history.
In his words: “For the past two years, the Space Island Group (SIG) has actively and aggressively pursued a project to build and launch the world’s first commercially viable space-based solar power satellites. The purpose of the project will be to enable environmentally clean and sustainable energy (in the form of electricity) to be delivered to Earth 24 hours a day with zero pollution.
“The overall cost to manufacture, launch and assemble the first satellite and its supporting infrastructure will be $US10 billion. A number of receptive sources for this have been identified, including the World Bank and several governments.
“The energy generated from this project in today’s market would be valued at $200 billion over a 20-year period, and we are in advanced discussions with several prospective purchasers of this energy, including our current primary interest, the Government of India.”
Thanks Peter for reminding us of what is really possible if we put our hearts and minds to something. I’ll be keeping an eye on your Space Island Group to watch the developments.