Electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors, Inc. and CEO Elon Musk have set their sights beyond a revolutionary automobile. Musk wants to become a major supplier of clean energy, one roof at a time.
Tesla is purchasing SolarCity Corp. in a blockbuster $2.6 billion deal designed to broaden the automaker’s clean energy aspirations by developing residential roofs made entirely out of solar photovoltaic shingles.
“It’s not a thing on the roof. It is the roof,” said Musk. “I think this is really a fundamental part of achieving differentiated product strategy, where you have a beautiful roof.”
Musk is familiar with the intricate workings of the largest rooftop solar installer in America. His cousins, Lyndon and Peter Rive, are co-founders and remain an integral part of SolarCity’s executive management team. Under their helm, SolarCity has amassed nearly 32% of the market share in the promising solar industry, according to recent statistics.
Musk isn’t interested in merely installing solar modules on existing roofs. Tesla and SolarCity said they are creating the “world’s only vertically integrated sustainable energy company” through their combination of solar, power storage and transportation.
SolarCity also announced that it will strive to release two new solar roof products by the end of 2016.
Musk realizes the urgency of implementing a comprehensive clean energy solution in the U.S. Last month, President Obama announced the Clean Energy Savings for All Americans initiative with a goal of delivering one gigawatt of solar energy to low-income households by 2020. For now, Musk is focusing on SolarCity’s corporate realignment strategy to determine how to reduce operating costs and creating his synergetic energy model in the process.