Monday, October 8, 2012
Elon Musk's SolarCity Files For IPO
It's been a big weekend for tech entrepreneur Elon Musk, after another successful launch Sunday from his commercial spaceflight firm, SpaceX--based in Hawthorne--and, it turns out, another IPO filing for Musk. SolarCity, a Bay Area provider of solar power financing, filed for an IPO Friday, saying that it is looking to raised $201.25M in an IPO on the NASDAQ Global Market as SCTY. It turns out that Musk owns 31.9 percent of SolarCity, which was founded by his cousins, Lyndon and Peter Rive. Musk is no stranger to IPOs; his electric car firm, Tesla Motors, had its IPO in 2010 and he co-founded PayPal, which had its IPO in 2002. SpaceX, the commercial rocketship firm which has made Elon Musk one of Southern California's best known entrepreneurs, has long been rumored to be considering an IPO, but it appears SolarCity might beat SpaceX to market. SolarCity has avoided the flameout of many other American solar companies by focusing on the financing--not development--of solar power installations, by providing power purchase agreements (PPAs) which help people lease back their panels and both lower their power bills and avoid the large capital costs involved with solar power installs.