Jigar Shah is an entrepreneur and visionary committed to leveraging the next economy by solving the challenging issues of our time. Shah has recognized this as “The Impact Economy.”
Shah has noted that a global "Impact Economy" is one in which mainstream investors team up with corporations, entrepreneurs, and governments at scale to solve the big environmental and social problems of our time while generating compelling financial returns – not just average returns.
Today, he is CEO of Jigar Shah Consulting and a board member of the Carbon War Room. He works closely with some of the world’s leading influencers and guides policy makers around the globe on key issues to implement solutions for global warming and sustainability that will unlock that next trillion dollar impact economy.
His first foray in realizing his vision was the founding of SunEdison in 2003; today the world’s leading solar services company. SunEdison, through Shah’s perseverance and vision, simplified solar as a service through the implementation of the power purchase agreement (PPA) business model. That model changed the status quo, allowing organizations to purchase solar energy services under long-term predictably priced contracts and avoid the significant capital costs of ownership and operation of solar energy systems. The SunEdison business model remains an important catalyst that turned solar into a multi-billion dollar industry worldwide.
From 2009 to March 2012, Shah served as the first CEO of the Carbon War Room, the global organization founded by Richard Branson and Virgin Unite to help save the world from Climate Change. During Shah’s tenure he was a trailblazer in helping build the organization into one of global importance.
In the few years, since its founding The Carbon War Room has identified 17 sectors that all contain gigaton scale profitable opportunities ready to scale up to an “Impact Economy” – representing the largest economic opportunity of our generation.
Prior to launching SunEdison and his tenure as Carbon War Room CEO, Shah managed mergers & acquisitions, corporate strategy, and sales efforts for BP Solar, specializing in national commercial accounts. He also worked as a contractor for the Department of Energy on alternative vehicles and fuel cell programs.
Shah holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, and an MBA from The University of Maryland. Besides the Carbon War Room, he also sits on the boards of the SolarNexus, KMR Infrastructure, Prometheus Institute and Greenpeace USA.