Solar Contribution Expected to Increase from Co-Branded Customer Relationship, Improved Economics and Increased Sales
/NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION IN THE UNITED STATES OR OVER UNITED STATES WIRE SERVICES/
TORONTO, Sept. 13, 2015 /CNW/ - Crius Energy Trust (TSX: KWH.UN) ("the Trust") today announced that Crius Energy LLC ("Crius Energy" or "Crius") and global solar energy provider Sungevity, Inc. ("Sungevity") have entered into a strategic agreement to offer residential solar energy systems and products through Crius Energy's family of world-class energy brands. The co-branded offering will be enabled by Sungevity's industry-leading technology platform, and will allow both companies to quickly access thousands of new potential customers in the fast-growing U.S. solar sector.
"In Sungevity, we've found the right strategic partner to take our solar business to the next level," said Michael Fallquist, Chief Executive Officer of Crius Energy Trust. "Sungevity's innovative technology platform, exceptional customer experience and extensive installation network promise to further differentiate our solar offering, expand our total volume of solar capacity sold, and deliver more favorable economics for our stakeholders."
"Joining forces with Crius, a clear leader in the retail energy industry, will accelerate our efforts to make clean energy a reality for a broader range of American homeowners," said Sungevity Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Andrew Birch. "We're excited about the opportunity to connect with hundreds of thousands of established customer relationships through Crius's proprietary distribution channels."
Through the strategic alliance with Sungevity, Crius Energy will realize additional value from its existing solar business through improved economics, increased sales, and co-branded 20-year customer relationships. Crius will benefit from improved economics on each residential solar system sold through Sungevity, including increased compensation paid over the entire life of the customer relationship. Crius expects increased net sales of residential solar energy systems as a result of increased gross sales by leveraging Sungevity's industry-leading technology platform and reduced customer cancellation rates due to Sungevity's extensive distribution network.
Solar products sold through Sungevity will be co-branded with Crius Energy providing Crius with access to the 20+ year customer relationship. Crius expects the co-branded offering will create enhanced lifetime customer value through cross-selling opportunities.
The alliance will also provide incremental benefit to the deregulated energy business as Sungevity will begin selling Crius Energy clean electricity products to existing and potential customers starting in the first quarter of 2016.
Crius will continue to offer solar energy products in markets where Sungevity is not yet active through its current reseller agreement with SolarCity. Crius and Sungevity plan to aggressively open additional markets with a view to providing residential solar systems in all markets with a strong value proposition for customers.
Finally, as part of Crius's ongoing commitment to sustainability and social responsibility, Crius will donate one solar power system to a household in need for every 15 new residential solar installations through its new Sun Plus One™ program. Donations from Sun Plus One™ will also enable women in developing nations to train as solar engineers and install solar panels in their own off-grid villages.
"We are confident that our solar business will benefit from Sungevity's high customer satisfaction ratings and optimized installation process," Fallquist explained. "Crius looks forward to leveraging this new relationship to accelerate one of our stated growth initiatives while driving enhanced value for our unitholders."
About Crius Energy
Crius Energy Trust was established to provide investors with a distribution-producing investment through its 43.1% ownership interest in Crius Energy, LLC. With approximately 800,000 residential customer equivalents, Crius Energy, LLC is a comprehensive energy solutions partner that provides electricity, natural gas and solar products to residential and commercial customers. Crius Energy, LLC connects with energy customers through an innovative family-of-brands strategy and multi-channel marketing approach. This unique combination creates multiple access points to a broad suite of energy products and services that make it easier for consumers to make informed decisions about their energy needs. Crius Energy, LLC currently sells energy products in 20 states and the District of Columbia with plans to continue expanding its geographic reach.
The Trust intends to continue to qualify as a "mutual fund trust" under the Income Tax Act (Canada) (the "Tax Act"). The Trust will not be a "SIFT trust" (as defined in the Tax Act), provided that the Trust complies at all times with its investment restriction which precludes the Trust from holding any "non-portfolio property" (as defined in the Tax Act). Material information pertaining to the Trust may be found on http://www.sedar.com or www.criusenergytrust.ca.
Sungevity is a technology-driven solar energy company focused on making it easy and affordable for homeowners and business owners in the US and Europe to benefit from solar power. Leveraging proprietary remote solar design technology, Sungevity can deliver a quote without a site visit and provide prospective customers with visibility to potential savings on their electricity bills. The company continues to grow its customer base and now services 12 US states, the District of Columbia, the Netherlands, the UK and Germany. Sungevity is also the residential solar partner to Lowe's, and was recognized in 2015 by B Corp as one of the "Best for the World 2014" companies for environmental impact. For more information, visit www.sungevity.com.
Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information (collectively, "Forward-Looking Statements") that involves substantial known and unknown risks and uncertainties, most of which are beyond the control of Crius Energy, including, without limitation, those risks described in the Annual Information Form of the Trust dated March 25, 2015 (under the headings "Risk Factors" and "Forward-Looking Statements") and in the MD&A of the Trust for the period ended June 30, 2015. Any statements that express, or involve discussions as to, expectations, beliefs, plans, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance (often, but not always, through the use of words of phrases such as "will likely result", "are expected to", "expects", "will continue", "is anticipated", "anticipates", "believes", "estimated", "intends", "plans", "forecast", "projection" and "outlook") are not historical facts and may be Forward-Looking Statements and may involve estimates, assumptions and uncertainties which could cause actual results or outcomes to differ materially from those expressed in such Forward-Looking Statements. Forward-Looking Statements in this news release include, but are not limited to, the Trust's objectives and status as a mutual fund trust and not a SIFT trust, results of operations, financial position or cash flows, customer revenues and margins, customer additions and renewals, customer attrition, geographical expansion, customer consumption levels, general and administrative expenses, treatment under governmental regulatory regimes, distributable cash, growth of the business, improvement to the Company's risk management and operations, growth initiatives, customer cancellations, delayed installations, Canada-United States dollar foreign exchange rate, size and expansion opportunities in the Texas market, growth of the solar market portfolio, Crius Energy's expectations and estimates regarding the impact on Crius Energy of the recently completed transactions discussed herein, including the TriEagle Energy acquisition, the bought deal financing and the strategic partnership with Comcast and Crius Energy's expectations and estimates regarding the payment of distributions to unitholders. Crius Energy cautions investors of the Trust's securities about important factors that could cause Crius Energy's actual results to differ materially from those projected in any Forward-Looking Statements included in this news release. No assurance can be given that the expectations set out in this news release will prove to be correct and accordingly, prospective investors should not place undue reliance on these Forward-Looking Statements. These statements speak only as of the date of this news release and Crius Energy does not assume any obligation to update or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.
SOURCE Crius Energy Trust
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