The future looked spectacularly sunny less than two years ago when California-based solar energy company Sungevity opened its Downtown Kansas City office with plans to create 600 local jobs within five years.
Prospects are not quite so bright today. The firm has laid about two-thirds of its hundred-plus Kansas City staff and, according to the Kansas City Star, is not returning phone calls.
Greentech Media reports that the company, despite its keen environmental consciousness, has declined to pay severance or accrued vacation days to those laid off.
According to Greentech, although solar installations have nearly doubled year-over-year, residential installers like Sungevity have struggled to achieve profitability.
The question remains, though, how a company like Sungevity–or Solyndra before it–could have gone so wrong so quickly. True to form, the Star suggests that the “new Trump administration is scaring potential customers,” but Sungevity was in trouble when the Clinton campaign’s biggest worry seemed to be the election night balloon drop.
A more likely explanation is that the same bubble mentality that convinced Clinton fans their candidate could not lose convinced Sungevity investors their company could not fail. In both cases, it appears, they were selling a product that the public did not much want.
Originally published on The Sentinel. The Sentinel is an online news service that began publishing on January 30, 2017. They are an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that holds government and mainstream media accountable for providing complete, accurate and unbiased information so that citizens can make their own informed decisions on matters of public policy.