Tesla’s Solar Roof has a new competitor — Ikea

  • Ikea said it will start selling solar panels in select markets in California this year.
  • The company has been selling solar panels in some European markets since 2013.

Ikea announced that it was branching out into home solar panels in the US on Thursday.

The furniture company will team up with SunPower Corporation, a residential energy services provider, to create the initiative called Home Solar. The program will launch in select markets in California this fall.

“The launch of Home Solar with IKEA will allow more people to take greater control of their energy needs, and our goal is to offer the clean energy service at additional IKEA locations in the future,” Javier Quiñones, CEO & chief sustainability officer of IKEA in the US, said in the press release.

Last year, Ikea started selling renewable energy to homeowners in Sweden through a system which allowed households to buy energy from solar and wind parks and track their power usage on an app via a fixed monthly fee. The company also sells solar panels in 11 other markets, including the UK.

Ikea’s new initiative will make it a direct competitor residential solar-panel companies and Tesla Energy, an off-shoot of Elon Musk’s electric car company that designs and installs residential solar roofing. Insider previously reported that Musk’s company has faced a slurry of complaints related to poor customer services and price hikes of as much as $75,000.

The market for residential solar panels was estimated to be about $9.1 billion in 2020 and is expected to continue to grow in the coming decade, per data from Grand View Research. As of last fall, Tesla accounted for only about 2% of the residential solar market, according to a report from CNBC. In March, a solar industry magazine ranked Tesla Energy as fourth in US market share, just ahead of SunPower Corporation.

However, Tesla and SunPower’s products vary. While Tesla replaces existing roofing with sleek black solar panels, SunPower’s panels are added on top of the roofing shingles, making them a more traditional product.

The residential solar market is expected to grow in the coming years, but the industry has faced some headwinds from supply-chain snarls. In its latest earnings release, Tesla said its volume of solar deployments nearly halved during the beginning of the year as the result of import delays.

Ikea did not specify how much its solar panel installation process and monthly usage fees would cost. The average cost to install solar panels in the US is about $12,000 after federal tax incentives, according to Consumer Affairs.

California is a prime market for the launch of Ikea’s Home Solar initiative as it was home to about 40% of the nation’s residential solar energy capacity last year, according to the California Public Utilities Commission

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