SolarCity Raises $81 Million

SolarCitySolarCity announced earlier this week that it has raised $81 million in equity financing. The round was co-led by Silver Lake Kraftwerk and Valor Equity Partners, and included investments from Nicholas J. Pritzker, partner at Tao Ventures and senior development advisor for Hyatt Hotels Corp., and Shea Ventures, an affiliate of SolarCity partner Shea Homes. SolarCity Chairman Elon Musk and existing SolarCity investor DBL Investors also participated. The company stated that these funds will support SolarCity’s expansion of sales, marketing and operations, technology development and potential acquisitions.

“Individuals and organizations of all shapes and sizes are fed up with the growing cost and consequences of traditional energy,” said Lyndon Rive, SolarCity’s CEO. “This investment provides SolarCity the resources to explore new products and services and identify new geographies and potential acquisitions as we seek to deliver better energy choices to more customers.”

“SolarCity is the leader in its space,” said Raj Atluru, co-founder of Silver Lake Kraftwerk. “The company’s unique, vertically-integrated model, paired with incentives and falling technology costs, allows it to provide solar electricity to customers at lower rates than they pay for utility power. We’ve thoroughly analyzed SolarCity’s full-service approach to solar and energy efficiency and we believe it has the ability to deliver superior customer experience and service across multiple sectors.”

“SolarCity is making clean energy more accessible and affordable, and we’re excited for the opportunity to invest in its operations,” said Antonio Gracias, CEO of Valor Equity Partners.  Valor is also an investor in Tesla Motors.

According to Dow Jones VentureWire, SolarCity had raised $121 million in equity prior to this round (see prior Green VC coverage for some of these earlier investments).  There have also been numerous reports that SolarCity is considering an IPO.