*Press Release courtesy of the Iowa District Office U.S. Small Business Administration
In the past decade, Fairfield-based Ideal Energy has grown from one of Iowa’s first solar companies to beome a leading energy firm in the Midwest. Founded in 2009 by former U.S. Navy Seal Troy Van Beek and his wife Amy, the company specializes in commercial and industrial solar installations. It is widely recognized for delivering innovative and advanced clean energy solutions to customers throughout the Heartland.
Ideal Energy is a pioneer in energy storage in Iowa. Its successful business strategy created a new energy market segment in the state and positioned the veteran-owned company as one of the top 20 solar and storage providers in the nation.
The Van Beeks anticipated significant growth in 2020 after doubling sales in the previous year. The company placed a large equipment order from its Chinese suppliers in December that was expected to arrive in March. The early COVID-19 outbreak in China delayed shipments for six weeks, impacting the company’s spring construction projects. Due to the disrupted supply chain, Ideal Energy felt the pandemic’s economic impact almost immediately. Without the necessary equipment, it could not meet its customers’ needs and its cashflow suffered greatly.
Thanks to an SBA-backed Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan through Iowa State Bank in Fairfield, Ideal Energy was able to operate at almost full staff level. Designated as an essential business, it immediately implemented safety procedures to protect its workers. Office staff, including engineers, designers, project managers, and sales professional were given the option to work from home. The company’s quick transition to virtual meetings offered continued service to future and existing clients. Its onsite field teams also took additional safety measures with daily temperature checks, frequent sanitization practices and upgraded PPE.
The Van Beeks credit Ideal Energy’s long-term relationship with Iowa State Bank and Vice President Karl Metcalf’s quick response in processing the PPP loan for helping the company navigate the crisis. The bank’s ongoing support of the local business community is an example of the important role community banks are playing in the COVID-19 economic recovery.
Ideal Energy President Troy Van Beek (far left) with his field employees