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Key people

Danny KennedyCo-Founder; Andrew Birch — CEO;

Alec Guettel — Co-Founder
Number of employees
400+ (2013)
Sungevity electric car in Southern California

Sungevity is a solar electricity company based in Oakland, California. Founded in 2007, Sungevity uses its proprietary Remote Solar Design (RSD) tool to offer a quote and system design options without visiting the home.[1] The company designs home solar systems; provides financing options; and manages system installation, maintenance, and performance.

Sungevity operates in the United States and Europe. Within the United States, Sungevity installs solar solutions in California, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Mexico, New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, Vermont, Delaware, and Washington D.C..[2] In 2012, the company reported having more than 250 employees.[3]

Financing options[edit]

In 2010, Sungevity began offering its Solar Lease option to make solar energy more attainable. The lease allows eligible homeowners to install solar without the upfront costs associated with a purchase: lease payments are instead made over twenty years.

Early history[edit]

Sungevity was founded in 2007 by Danny Kennedy, Andrew Birch (CEO), and Alec Guettel. On September 22, 2009, Sungevity announced that it had raised $6 million to expand its services to Southern California and California's Central Valley. On May 1, 2010, Sungevity partnered with US Bank and launched its Solar Lease program.[4]

In December 2010, Sungevity raised an additional $15 million toward its Series C funding round, led by existing investors including Greener Capital and Firelake Capital, and with new investor Brightpath Capital Partners, an OaklandImpact investment fund. In 2011, Sungevity established partnerships with U.S. Bancorp, Rabobank, and Citigroup to fund residential solar installations. Also in 2011, Lowe's, the world's second-largest home-improvement retailer, purchased a stake in Sungevity.[5]

In February 2011, Sungevity brought Mac Irvin on board as its chief financial officer and named social media expert Patrick Crane, formerly of LinkedIn, as its chief marketing officer.[6]

In April 2014, Sungevity raised $70 million in equity, its biggest funding round yet. Investors included General Electric, Lowe's, Jetstream Ventures, and E.ON, Europe's largest investor-owned utility.[7]

Global expansion[edit]

In November 2011, Sungevity announced that it was expanding internationally by taking an equity stake in Dutch solar company Zonline.[8] Through the partnership, Sungevity would provide Zonline with its proprietary software tools, including the company's Remote Solar Design services and brand-identity assets. In June 2014, Sungevity acquired Zonline and launched Sungevity Netherlands.[9]

In April 2012, Sungevity and Australian solar company Nickel Energy announced a joint venture, called Sungevity Australia, that would provide Australian homeowners with their first pay-as-you-go solar option, which the company dubbed RoofJuice.[10]

Every Child Has a Light[edit]

In 2011, Sungevity announced the Every Child Has a Light program in partnership with Empowered by Light (EBL), a non-profit organization dedicated to improving lives through renewable energy technologies. Their joint "Go solar, give solar" campaign donates one solar light kit to schools in need in Zambia for each residential solar system Sungevity installs in the United States.

Globama (Solar on the White House)[edit]

In April 2010, Sungevity introduced the Solar on the White House campaign.[11] The stated purpose of the campaign was to have the President highlight the environmental and fiscal benefits of solar energy.[12] The campaign highlighted the fact that President Jimmy Carter had installed solar panels on the White House in 1979, at the same time he introduced several solar incentives. The panels were removed by President Ronald Reagan in 1986[13] when Carter's incentives ran out.

In August 2013, solar panels were installed on the White House.[14] The system became operational in May 2014.[15][edit]

In January 2011, Sungevity announced the launch of, paying schools and non-profit organizations in return for promoting their service. When a participating non-profit or school refers a customer, the company pays the school or non-profit and gives the customer a discount. claims it has given $1.5 million to non-profits and has helped offset 322,436 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions.[16] Sungevity also works with environmental non-profits such as The Sierra Club.[17]

Awards and recognition[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Startup sells solar panels online," San Francisco Chronicle, May 2009
  2. ^
  3. ^ Jeff Himmelmann, 'The Secret to Solar Power', New York Times, August 9, 2012
  4. ^ "Solar Leasing: Solar's Next Big Thing," Daily Finance, May 2012
  5. ^ Lowe’s Buys Sungevity Stake to Offer In-Store Solar Lease - Bloomberg
  6. ^ "Solar firm taps social-media expert to spur a 'rooftop revolution'," Christian Science Monitor, August 2011
  7. ^ "What E.ON And Other Energy Firms Want: Solar Investments," Forbes, April 2014
  8. ^ "Sungevity Takes Equity Stake in Dutch Solar Company," Business Reel, November 2011
  9. ^ "Sungevity & E.ON Team Up To Expand Solar Energy Business In Europe," CleanTechnica, June 2014
  10. ^ "Pay-as-you-go solar panels are proving a hit," Sydney Morning Herald, April 2012
  11. ^ Solar on the White House
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Where Did the Carter White House’s Solar Panels Go?" Scientific American, August 2010
  14. ^ "White House's Solar Panel Installation Has Begun, Source Confirms," Huffington Post, August 2013
  15. ^ "White House Solar Panels Are Finally Up," Huffington Post, May 2014
  16. ^ "Solar Company Sungevity Raises $1.5 Million For Nonprofit Partners," Huffington Post, July 2014
  17. ^ "Sierra Club's local solar campaign, brought to you by Sungevity,", June 2011
  18. ^ ABAG Green Business Program
  19. ^ SF Biz Times honors greenest and cleanest (tech that is) - San Francisco Business Times
  20. ^ 2011 Winners | Green Jobs Award

External links[edit]