WORCESTER TELEGRAM & GAZETTE – ‘Residential solar is a disruptive technology that is changing the world,’ said Derek Landino, district manager for a solar installation company that has recently set up shop in Marlboro. ‘There is now a renewable energy source that can actually save customers money.’
To Mr. Landino, it’s what makes green technology, particularly solar power, so compelling — to him, and to his growing customer base.
He is the district manager for the new Vivint Solar Marlborough, which, along with offices in Taunton and Holyoke, represent recent expansions of the full-service residential solar provider that has headquarters in Utah. The office at 53 Brigham St. in Marlboro will handle Marlboro and Worcester-area clients.
Vivint Solar now has four locations in Massachusetts (the fourth is Raynham), and in 2013, Vivint became the state’s top residential solar provider, with more than four megawatts worth of solar systems installed. The company sells electricity to homeowners, who have solar panels installed on their roofs. Vivint Solar owns, maintains, services and monitors the panels.
‘Our success in some areas of the state encouraged us to expand to new locations,’ said Mr. Landino, ‘so we opened new offices to serve more customers where our pricing is competitive with the local utility.’
Vivint offers solar power at $.105 cents per kilowatt, while most other current utilities offer $.175 cents per kilowatt.
‘Not everyone in Massachusetts wants to save the environment, but everyone should want to save money,’ said Mr. Landino.
The expansion of Solar Vivint translates into jobs, some 240, adding to its 150 already in Massachusetts. The company has already hired 30 sales representatives, and plans to bring aboard roughly 60 operations technicians, which includes surveyors, permitting staff, CAD designers, installers and electricians. All of the jobs will be inhouse, and many are hired from local colleges and trade schools, said Mr. Landino.
Marlboro Mayor Arthur Vigeant, City Councilor Edward Clancy, Economic Development Executive Director Tim Cummings and Marlborough Chamber of Commerce President Susanne Leeber toured the new Vivint Solar operations office and warehouse.
The tour was led by operations manager Richard Anderson, a Massachusetts local who started with Vivint Solar in its Woburn office over a year ago and was promoted to manager. Mr. Anderson showcased the solar installation process in a custom rooftop training room developed by Anderson to train its technical team on structural reviews, CAD design/layout, solar panel installation and microinverter technology.
Vivint Solar’s new territory expansion coincides with Solar Energy Industries Association’s Solar Market Insight Year in Review, which found that photovoltaic installations continue to grow, increasing 41 percent nationally from 2012, according to a press release.
According to Greentech Media Research’s Q3 2013 Leaderboard, Vivint Solar installed more PV systems in homes in Massachusetts than any other company, and has locations in seven states. Vivint originally opened in Massachusetts in Woburn in February 2012, its second office opening in the country.
‘The process so far with Vivint Solar has been great,’ said Karen Lococo, a Vivint Solar customer and resident of Chalmshead, in a press release. ‘The people we have worked with have been excellent, and the fact that we didn’t have to pay anything up front was a big plus. The realization that it was going to save us money on our utility bill was excellent for us.’
This article originally appeared here.