SolarCity to Gain Access to Crius Energy’s U.S. Customers

SolarCity Corp., the rooftop-solar power provider that’s quadrupled in value since its December initial public offering, struck a marketing partnership that gives it access to Crius Energy Trust’s customer base in the U.S. Northeast.

Crius has about 230,000 customers in nine U.S. states and Washington, D.C., through its Viridian Energy unit and will initially offer SolarCity’s services in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland and Delaware, the solar company said today in a statement. Toronto-based Crius will earn a commission on every sale.

The agreement is expected to reduce San Mateo, California-based SolarCity’s customer-acquisition costs and help Chief Executive Officer Lyndon Rive reach a goal of 1 million customers, or 6,000 megawatts installed, by 2018. Rive estimated in July that acquisition costs in the industry are about $2,000 to $3,000 and should eventually fall to $50 to $100.

The partnership makes "clean energy more accessible and affordable to a wide range of American homeowners," Rive said in the statement. The company had installed a total of 387 megawatts as of June 30.

SolarCity agreed in August to acquire the direct marketing company Paramount Energy Solutions LLC for about $120 million in stock and cash to boost sales. The company slipped 3.9 percent to $35.77 at the close in New York. It went public in December at $8.

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