Los Angeles Business Journal

Guthy-Renker Sells Solar Business

By Deborah Crowe Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Santa Monica direct-marketing giant Guthy-Renker LLC has sold its solar energy marketing subsidiary, Paramount Solar, to one of its partners, SolarCity Corp., in a stock-and-cash deal valued at $120 million.

Paramount Solar is based in Granite Bay, near Sacramento, and offers options for residential solar energy systems in 14 states. The company is part of Paramount Equity, which Guthy-Renker acquired about 1-1/2 years ago. The deal gives Guther-Renker, best known for its consumer products infomercials, about $116 million in stock of Solar City, a San Mateo company.

Paramount Chief Executive Hayes Barnard is expected to remain with the company, and Ben Van de Bunt, Guthy-Renker CEO, will join SolarCity's board.

"Over the past four years, the Paramount Solar team has built the company into a direct marketing and virtual sales powerhouse,” Barnard said in a statement. “We are incredibly proud of this accomplishment and feel that it is the perfect time to join forces with SolarCity.”

Solar City fell 2 percent to $36.14 on the Nasdaq on Wednesday.