Sunrun, one the nation's largest home solar companies, recently announced that the company raised $60 million in equity financing in a round led by Madrone Capital Partners and including existing investors Accel Partners, Sequoia Capital and Foundation Capital.
Sunrun is planning to use the financing to continue development of solar technology and to decrease the cost of solar, simplifying the installation process for customers of the company and its partners.
The solar company introduced solar power services in 2007 for homeowners, making it easier for them to convert to an alternative energy source without having to pay an upfront cost. Residential installations owned and maintained by the company make it easy for homeowners to go green. Sunrun customers can also save money on energy by fixing costs for two decades.
"We've proven that solar service is making solar adoption possible for more American families, and now the next phase is to innovate on the installation process, service, and cost reduction," said Lynn Jurich, Sunrun president and co-founder. "The infrastructure required to deliver that impeccable service is complex and expensive, and this investment demonstrates our investors' belief that we are the right company to further develop and scale it."
Sunrun has more than 20,000 customers stretching across 10 states, and installs more than $1.5 million in solar energy equipment daily - impressive stats that go a long way in explaining the infusion of investor capital.
"Madrone has high confidence in Sunrun, its management team, and its plan for scaling the processes and technologies needed to take affordable solar mainstream," said Madrone general partner Jamie McJunkin.
Sunrun has double the market share of the next largest provider in the state of California. Solar power services of the type innovated by Sunrun - which provides the upkeep for its residential installations - have caught on in the Golden State and across the country. Seventy-five percent of the home solar market in California and more than 80 percent in Massachusetts use a solar power service.
"This additional equity investment emphasizes the current success and long-term potential of the solar service business model," said Sequoia Capital partner Warren Hogarth. "The downstream solar market is thriving right now, and Sunrun and its partners are leading that growth."
The Sierra Club, which is the nation's largest environmental organization, recently announced that it is partnering with Sungevity, one of the leading providers of residential solar, to transition families to solar power without as much financial strain. Through the partnership, everyone who decides to convert to solar electricity will receive a $750 cash gift card and Sungevity will contribute $750 to the Sierra Club.
Considering many Americans are still recovering from the recession, it has become more difficult for consumers to transition to using solar power. While initial installation can be pricey, the cost of solar panels has fallen sharply, reducing the overall price tag for converting to solar. In addition, solar rebates and incentives are offered at the federal, state and local level in some areas, which could reduce the price of installation and maintenance of solar energy systems significantly. Sungevity estimates that on average, customers have the ability to save up to 15 percent on electricity costs when they convert to solar power.