Generac further expands into grid business with ecobee acquisition

Credit: ecobee.

About a year ago, Generac acquired DERMS provider Enbala to further its smart grid 2.0 capabilities and yesterday, the company said it is adding smart home technology company ecobee to its family. In a press release, the company said the transaction could be worth as much as $770 million contingent on the achievement of certain performance targets.

One of the first companies to deliver smart thermostats, ecobee was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in Toronto, Canada. With a team of over 500 employees globally, ecobee currently offers several ENERGY STAR-certified thermostats and a suite of home monitoring products, designed with a focus on conservation, convenience, peace of mind and comfort. ecobee’s smart thermostats optimize heating and cooling systems to deliver energy savings for homeowners, said the company.

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“ecobee’s solutions are an important addition to Generac’s extensive residential energy technology portfolio,” said Aaron Jagdfeld, president and chief executive officer of Generac. “Residential HVAC systems represent the largest energy-consuming device in the home today and ecobee’s smart thermostats and sensors offer the most intelligent way to balance comfort with conservation. In addition, the ability to combine ecobee’s cutting-edge technologies with Generac’s power generation, energy storage and energy management devices will allow us to create a clean, efficient, and reliable home energy ecosystem that will not only save homeowners money, but also help grid operators meet the challenges of an electrical grid under enormous stress by providing solutions to better balance supply and demand.”

With over two million connected homes, ecobee said its customers in North America have collectively saved more than 20 TWh of energy, the equivalent of saving enough energy to take all the homes in Los Angeles off the grid for an entire year.

“Generac’s evolution into an energy technology solutions company creates many opportunities to integrate our ecobee products with their residential device offerings, enabling direct monitoring and control of a significant portion of the home’s electrical load,” said Stuart Lombard, founder and chief executive officer of ecobee. “We are excited to join the Generac team so together we can deliver a cleaner, more resilient and sustainable energy future for our customers and communities.”

At closing and subject to customary adjustments, Generac will pay $200 million in cash along with $450 million in GNRC common stock to the current equity holders of ecobee. Additionally, upon achievement of certain performance targets between closing and June 30, 2023, the sellers may receive up to $120 million in additional shares of GNRC common stock.

The acquisition is expected to close during the fourth quarter, subject to customary closing conditions, including clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act.

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Jennifer Runyon has been studying and reporting about the world's transition to clean energy since 2007. As editor of the world's largest renewable energy publication, Renewable Energy World, she observed, interviewed experts about, and reported on major clean energy milestones including Germany's explosive growth of solar PV, the formation and development of the U.S. onshore wind industry, the U.K. offshore wind boom, China's solar manufacturing dominance, the rise of energy storage, the changing landscape for utilities and grid operators and much, much, more. Today, in addition to managing content on POWERGRID International, she also serves as the conference advisory committee chair for DISTRIBUTECH, a globally recognized conference for the transmission and distribution industry. You can reach her at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com

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