Last week, Tesla Energy Ventures, a new subsidiary of electric car maker Tesla Inc. (TSLA), filed an application to become a retail electricity provider in the state of Texas. According to reports, the company plans to sell electricity drawn from the grid to customers and from its battery storage products. Its grid transaction software may also enable customers for its solar panels to sell excess electricity back to the grid.1
For those who have been following Tesla’s fortunes in the electric car industry, the Palo Alto, California-based company’s filing may seem baffling. But the move dovetails with Tesla’s overall ambitions for its renewable energy business.
Why Does Tesla Want to Become an Electricity Provider?
The simple answer to that question is that Tesla already manufactures devices that produce and store power. Examples of such devices are its electric cars, which come equipped with lithium ion batteries, and its suite of battery storage products for homes and enterprises. Selling power generated from these devices to consumers or to the grid is a logical next step.