His company, he admits, is all about cherry picking.
Lori A. Burkhart is a contributing legal editor with Public Utilities Fortnightly and the managing editor of Fortnightly’s Gridweek.
This issue we took some time off to have some fun. We caught up with Trans-Elect president and COO Bernie Schroeder in downtown D.C.
We wanted to learn the latest on who's buying, selling and churning assets in the transmission world. And Bernie did not disappoint. As Schroeder puts it, Trans-Elect is "all about cherry-picking."
Trans-Elect can be fun to watch. In just two short years, it has gone from shoestring to front page-from scrounging some funds from teacher's pensions to buying some power lines up in Alberta, to seeing its CEO, Fred Buckman, named by Business Week in January as one of its top entrepreneurs of the year.
And with Trans-Elect staking out ground as one of the first companies to get into the merchant transmission biz, they are taking advantage-buying up just as many properties as they can. That's the business model, in fact. Interconnection can come later.
Trans-Elect states its goal right up front: buy two transmission systems a year, at a minimum. The key, Schroeder explained, is to find the sellers, which is why it took some time to talk to him in person-he always is flying around the country scoping out the next deal.
"The strategic advantage by geography is something we really have to create," he said.
"In a perfect world you would buy the most ideal, centralized grid and then begin buying the contiguous lines next to them-but it doesn't work that way."