Tesla and SolarCity merger to be voted on by shareholders on Nov. 17

Photo credit: Reuters/Lucas Jackson

Tesla and SolarCity announced this week that the shareholder vote to approve or reject the proposed merger between the two companies will take place on November 17. Before that happens, SolarCity will unveil is newest product, a solar roof, on October 28. Instead of adding a solar panel system over an existing roof, the solar roof will actually be the roof. Elon Musk has said it will last as long as a traditional roof and be more attractive than a rooftop solar installation.

Combined with Tesla’s latest Powerwall 2.0, Musk thinks the solar roof will create significant new demand for SolarCity products. In a blog post this week, Tesla said that on November 1, it “will provide additional financial information relating to its plans for the combined company.” It goes on to say the introduction of the solar roof combined with the new financial disclosures “will create a clear picture of how a combined Tesla and SolarCity will make solar and storage as compelling as electric vehicles – an achievement that would advance our mission of accelerating the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”

Musk, of course, is committed to addressing the issue of climate change by lowering the carbon emissions from fossil fuel powered vehicles and electrical generating plants. The Tesla blog post focuses on that goal. “If shareholders approve the transaction, a combined Tesla and SolarCity will be able to provide the first ever opportunity to generate, store and consume energy entirely sustainably, through a suite of integrated products that add aesthetics and function while reducing cost. By leveraging SolarCity’s installation network and Tesla’s global retail footprint, we can do this in a way that is seamless for our customers and that we expect will create significant value for our shareholders.”

The two companies still have to deal with lawsuits filed by disgruntled shareholders who are seeking to block the merger. Some have suggested the proposed merger is little more than a bailout for Musk’s cousins, Lyndon and Peter Rive, who head SolarCity. But recently, Musk tweeted that, if combined, neither company would need to raise more operating capital this year.

Between now and November 17, Tesla and SolarCity will continue their efforts to convince shareholders a merger of the two companies is in their best interest. Details for how shareholders can cast their votes on November 17 are contained in the Tesla blog post.

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