By Lauren Ford   September 22, 2020

TerraForm Powers Up from Fragmented to Unified with OneStream Cloud

Many sophisticated organizations today are stuck in a tangled web of multiple applications to support financial consolidation, reporting and planning needs. But maintaining a fragmented landscape of finance systems is costly and challenging. How can you be sure your data is correct when there are multiple versions of results? And as these organizations expand, business models shift which can cause added strain on finance teams. Luckily, there's a better solution.

A unified, cloud-based corporate performance management (CPM) software can help centralize financial databases into a single platform to automate key processes with real-time insights and a comprehensive view of the entire enterprise. Cloud-based CPMs are cost-effective and secure, yet flexible with several integration options. By upgrading to a unified CPM landscape, organizations can rest assured that their needs are met as the business continues to grow.

Take the case of TerraForm Power, an owner and operator of a best-in-class, renewable power portfolio with over 4,000 MW of solar and wind assets. Since separating from their previous sponsor, TerraForm Power decided to ditch their outdated legacy applications and instead take a "cloud first" approach to new software implementations. Read on to learn how TerraForm went from fragmented to unified with a cloud-based CPM strategy.

Electric Growth at TerraForm

Headquartered in New York City, TerraForm Power is focused on acquiring, owning and operating solar and wind assets across North America and Western Europe. Founded in 2014, TerraForm Power operates with 170+ employees and generates over $940M in annual revenue (as of FY 2019). TerraForm Power is positioned to capitalize on the growth in renewable power generation through organic expansion and the acquisition of new facilities, including through its sponsor and majority shareholder Brookfield Asset Management.

From Cumbersome to the Cloud

The finance landscape at TerraForm Power was a cumbersome mess of systems including Microsoft Dynamics 365, Medius Flow, Bluepoint 3Megawatt, Blackline and Paychex. They were also using several Hyperion applications including Oracle HFM, Hyperion Planning and SmartView for MS Office. This created a challenging environment for the company's finance and IT teams. And their business users found HFM to be a difficult tool to work with, which led to a heavy reliance on Excel. And by adding spreadsheets to the mix, TerraForm Power experienced inconsistencies between accounting, FP&A and Tax, with no central source of the truth at any given time. TerraForm Power needed something more flexible, cost-effective, compliant and cloud-based.

The OneStream Difference

After evaluating multiple vendors, including Oracle EPM Cloud, TerraForm Power liked OneStream best for its unique Extensible Dimensionality®, OneStream MarketPlace™ of downloadable solutions, and Microsoft® Azure Cloud infrastructure. Today TerraForm Power has 75 OneStream users across Accounting, FP&A, Financial Reporting and Portfolio Managers.

With 1,200 entities and six hierarchies, the company is using four different currencies and have a high level of intercompany activity. But OneStream consolidates quickly and has improved TerraForm's visibility into intercompany balances and transactions. For reporting and analysis, end users have been using OneStream Cube Views and Quick Views. OneStream has helped TerraForm Power to close the books quicker, reducing period-end close time from seven to four days! They are working with accurate results which allows them to get through audits more reliably. And with annualbudgeting in OneStream, TerraForm has moved from quarterly to monthly rolling forecasts using driver-based techniques.

Benefits Achieved

After implementing OneStream, TerraForm Power revaluated their Blackline solution and decided to move account reconciliations into OneStream through the OneStream MarketPlace solution. This enabled TerraForm Power to save $100K annually in Blackline licensing and reduce the number of accounts from 700 to 150.

With OneStream, FP&A can do more analysis on their own without relying on the accounting team. OneStream has eliminated two months from the budgeting cycle and intercompany out of balances have been reduced from millions in some cases, to $50K. Overall, OneStream has empowered users to be more efficient and communicate better across departments and finance functions. Best off all, as TerraForm Power looks at the original financial assessment projected for moving to OneStream — the return now is far better than expected.

Learn More

To learn more about how OneStream Cloud handles consolidation and planning at TerraForm Power, we invite you to check out the interactive case study article. And if you're ready to see a preview of OneStream in action, contact us today to schedule you exclusive demonstration.