SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive to leave Tesla

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"Lyndon Rive co-founded SolarCity eleven years ago, and built it into the number one solar provider in the nation".

CEO and co-founder of SolarCity, Lyndon Rive, who is also Tesla CEO Elon Musk's cousin, transitioned to Vice-President of Tesla Energy, which now includes both energy generation and storage.

Rive, the former CEO of SolarCity, told Reuters on Monday that he wants to start a new company and spend more time with his family. Since previous year, SolarCity's former CEO had been serving as head of sales and service for Tesla's energy division. Rive created SolarCity with Musk in 2006.

Rive said that the solar panel installer is "healthier" than it has ever been, and it is time for him to move on. SolarCity was acquired by Tesla in November 2016.

Since its acquisition by Tesla, SolarCity had continued to generate substantial losses for Tesla, which however is now part of the company's grand unified vision of providing a vertically integrated "green" transportation and energy conglomerate. " However, under the much bigger Tesla balance sheet, SolarCity's financial problems were quickly diluted, if not forgotten". But given that SolarCity was burning through about the same amount of cash as Tesla at the time, despite being one-tenth the size, raised some eyebrows.


The announcement of Rive's departure comes just days after Tesla began taking orders for its new solar product - solar shingles that will replace the boxy panels that attach to roofs. As we showed before, the only reason the company's business model is competitive and even remotely viable, is due to "tax grants".

Tesla told reporters that Cal Lankton, the company's vice president of global infrastructure operations, will take over for Rive.

Rive told Reuters that he's more interested in "starting and running companies", but it's also true that Tesla has changed its strategy regarding installations on homes, which definitely impacts Rive's original vision of providing a means to get to low-priced, widespread distribution of aftermarket installations for everyday people.

Like his cousin, Rive grew up in South Africa with an ambitious, entrepreneurial mother and an early desire to start companies. I can hand off the baton to somebody else and give myself the opportunity to do something else that could also have another impact.

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