Meet the Team: Ed Franklin, COO
Our Meet the Team blog series highlights the great people behind Moixa. This week, we interviewed Ed, Moixa’s Chief Operating Officer, who took the time to discuss his role and how he believed in the company’s vision from the very beginning.
Meet the Team: Ed Franklin, COO
Ed joined the company soon after it was founded and was Managing Director of Moixa’s USBCell consumer-battery business between 2007 and 2010.
Rejoining the business in 2016, Ed is now Moixa’s Chief Operating Officer, being in overall charge of customer and business operations, including finance, legal, people and corporate affairs.
Prior to Moixa, Ed spent most of his career working in a multinational law firm now called Squires Patton Boggs, where he practised in corporate finance and IP litigation.
Ed holds an MBA from Cambridge Judge Business School, and he’s a qualified solicitor.
How did you first hear about Moixa?
Our founder Simon Daniel was a client of the law firm I was working for, and one of the partners was an early investor.
What made you want to take the job?
Simon and Chris’ (Wright, Moixa’s co-founder) enthusiasm was infectious. They wanted to change the world and had a clear vision about how batteries would reduce carbon and support the energy transition.
I will never forget having our first meeting in their tiny Soho studio office – it was quite a change from the skyscraper I had been working in! It was clear that they needed a lawyer urgently, and I thought I could make an immediate impact.
What elements of Moixa and our business are you most passionate about?
It’s easy to forget that we were pioneers of the home smart battery idea. Most people we spoke to in the early years about our project couldn’t see the opportunity. Seeing the concept germinate into reality and the industry that has grown around it is inspiring. It is great to be part of the wider revolution towards the mass-market adoption of home batteries and the impact of home energy storage on harnessing renewable energy.
My role has been centred around building the nuts and bolts of the business – building the team, the culture, the routines and processes. I am really pleased that there is a universal appreciation for the quality of people who work for the company. Not only are our people smart and talented, but they are genuinely decent human beings as well.
What is one element of Moixa’s culture that you really appreciate?
Especially during these challenging times, raising awareness of our mental wellbeing has never been more critical.
At Moixa, we want to strongly focus on supporting people’s mental health. From organising mental health talks and workshops to offering our employees volunteering opportunities and complete access to mental health support through Spill, we want to enable and encourage everyone to be themselves at work and feel well.
As inclusion and mental wellbeing are closely connected, a focus on mental health is also an essential need at the heart of an inclusive workplace. At Moixa, we are committed to improving our culture’s inclusiveness and bolstering access to effective mental health services for all our employees.
Read more about how Moixa is working towards inclusion in our blog.
What happens on a typical workday for you?
No day is typical! But we have a management call at 08:30 every day, which tends to set the tone. I have six direct reports, and my role is really about empowering and enabling them to do their jobs well and helping to solve challenges. I couldn’t do their job half as well as they do, so I am at their service.
I have overall responsibility for ensuring that the company is on track to hit its annual and quarterly targets, so I will direct myself to whatever is not on track and try to unblock.
Are you currently working on any exciting projects?
We have just agreed on a date for our next company get together. When the pandemic started, Moixa adopted a hybrid working policy, meaning that people were able to work wherever they liked within the UK. It has been easy to default to trust and let our people decide how and when to work and be confident that they will deliver.
Read more about flexible working in our blog, where the Moixa team shares their experiences.
A small group of people come into the office, but for the most part, we are still working remotely. Bringing people together in person every six months or so is very uplifting and really important for our culture, particularly meeting new colleagues for the first time.
What has been your highest point since joining Moixa? What is the biggest challenge in your role?
Closing our Series A investment from ITOCHU Corporation was a significant milestone for the company, and I played quite a big part in that.
As for challenges, we are fortunate that we have quite low staff turnover, but whenever someone does decide to move on, it is always a challenge, given the size of our team. We conduct exit interviews with all leavers, and it is always frustrating when we find out about issues that we could have fixed sooner, but we try to learn our lessons and address any feedback quickly.
What steps are you individually making towards a cleaner future?
I recently had a leak in my roof, which was easily fixable, but we committed ourselves to removing and replacing the entire roof with modern tiles and proper insulation. This should reduce our energy consumption at home considerably.
What are the essential skills you need to be successful in your role?
Good communication skills, clear decision-making process, and being a performance enabler (i.e. good manager).
What change would you make to the energy industry if you had a magic wand?
Upgrade our housing stock to EPC Rating A – we’d need so much less energy.
What is the one thing we should know about you that isn’t on your CV or LinkedIn Profile?
I failed my driving test 5 times.
If you weren’t in your current role, what else do you think you would be doing?
Outside of our sector, I am very interested in lab-grown meat – I think this is going to be a real game-changer in the future, given the huge environmental damage and energy waste associated with the livestock industry.
I don’t think we will ever give up eating meat, but I can imagine a future where lab-grown, efficiently produced meat is mainstream and highly attractive. There is clearly a cost hurdle to overcome but we did the same with batteries!
What is one great piece of career advice you have been given?
A huge thank you to Ed for taking the time out to discuss his life at Moixa. You can connect with Ed on LinkedIn here.