News » 2013 » KYOCERA and VGI Energy Bring Solar Power to Affordable Multi-Family Housing in Chicago


KYOCERA and VGI Energy Bring Solar Power to Affordable Multi-Family Housing in Chicago

Energy Efficiency and Solar Solutions Reduce Costs

Scottsdale, AZ – March 12, 2013 - Kyocera Solar Inc. announced today that it is supplying Kyocera solar modules and MyGen™ Pro installation systems to VGI Energy for affordable, multi-family housing units in urban Chicago. VGI’s retrofitted buildings throughout Chicago have been outfitted with 20kW rooftop solar arrays, providing electricity from the clean, renewable energy of the sun and contributing to VGI’s goal of achieving zero-net-energy-capable buildings.

Since 2010, VGI has installed Kyocera solar modules on six Chicago buildings ranging in size from 18 to 70 units, providing more than 600 people with the opportunity to use renewable energy in their daily lives.

“Our housing developments aim to enhance the quality of life for each resident with programs that integrate independent lifestyles with a sense of community; utilizing solar energy to reduce the environmental footprint is a key component,” said Van Vincent, CEO, VGI Energy. “Our partnership with Kyocera plays a very strategic role in our commitment to bringing solar power to an underserved sector of the population: residents of low-income, urban areas.”

Kyocera’s MyGen™ Pro system includes Kyocera’s solar modules, Enphase and SMA inverters, mounting systems, monitoring packages and all hardware and components necessary to install a state-of-the-art solar electric system on nearly any building. The system can be sized to meet a wide range of power requirements for residential or light commercial buildings.

“Kyocera’s MyGen Pro offering is ideal for this application because it gives VGI choice and flexibility when incorporating proven, reliable solar energy into virtually any housing structure while saving crucial time,” said Steve Hill, president, Kyocera Solar Inc. “Kyocera has been at the forefront of the solar energy industry for almost 40 years, which gives us unrivaled metrics and expertise in ensuring our systems are highly effective and that these affordable, multi-family buildings will continue producing clean, renewable energy for decades to come.”

VGI’s vision is to transform and preserve the current state of affordable multi-family housing in the City of Chicago — breathing new life into buildings with a sharp eye toward sustainability by installing LED lighting, energy-efficient windows, ENERGY STAR® appliances and water-efficient plumbing fixtures.

“In addition to Kyocera’s industry experience, high-quality solar modules and proven reliability, Kyocera’s philosophy of doing what’s right for people is aligned with VGI’s commitment to doing what we can to help humanity,” stated Faustina Roman-del Rio, VGI’s vice president of sustainability. “Our company philosophies are a good fit with each other.”
As a member of Kyocera’s new Diamond Partner Program for solar PV installers, VGI receives first access to the Company’s latest products and technology innovations, best price guarantees, special sales, discounted training programs, online tools for lead-generation and enhanced technical support.

“Kyocera Solar is honored to contribute to VGI’s goals of providing solar energy to this important market segment,” stated Hill. “Bringing solar technology to low-income families is in line with Kyocera’s commitment to global environmental preservation.”  

Kyocera is one of the world’s leading producers and suppliers of solar photovoltaic modules and systems. With a 37-year history of innovation in solar technology, the company is recognized as an industry pioneer ― and is in a unique position to integrate decades of experience into its product development and support for both residential and industrial clients across the globe. Kyocera serves thousands of customers in both developed and developing regions, with more than 3 gigawatts of solar collection equipment installed since 1975. The company has set repeated world records in multicrystal silicon cell efficiency and most recently gained the distinction of producing the world’s first modules to pass the Long-Term Sequential Test for reliability performed by TUV Rheinland Japan Ltd. Kyocera Solar, Inc. is headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona with regional sales affiliates in the Americas and Australia.

Kyocera Corporation (NYSE:KYO) (TOKYO:6971) (, the parent and global headquarters of the Kyocera Group, was founded in 1959 as a producer of fine ceramics (also known as “advanced ceramics”). By combining these engineered materials with metals and plastics, and integrating them with other technologies, Kyocera has become a leading supplier of solar power generating systems, printers, copiers, telecommunications equipment, electronic components, semiconductor packages, cutting tools and industrial ceramics. During the year ended March 31, 2012, the company’s net sales totaled 1.19 trillion yen (approx. USD14.5 billion). The company is ranked #426 on Forbes magazine’s 2012 “Global 2000” listing of the world’s largest publicly traded companies.

About VLV Development and VGI Energy
Based in Chicago, VLV Development was created to awaken emerging domestic markets to sustainability by driving groundbreaking results in energy efficiency with courage, leadership and vision. VGI Energy, a VLV Development company, is committed to providing near-zero energy, multi-family housing by incorporating energy efficient solutions, solar energy and green build development. VGI has developed a blueprint for what is possible when reinvigorating urban areas in a sustainable manner, and plans to expand its efforts to drive groundbreaking results in emerging urban markets. Transformation Housing, LLC (TH) is the sustainable property management division of VLV Development. Dedicated to green building development, TH provides sustainable property management to maximize cost savings, reduce energy consumption and improve the environmental sustainability of property portfolios with a holistic approach.