I was recently asked about GAF Energy’s origin story. 

It actually begins at our sibling company GAF, the leading roofing company in the United States.

In 2016, leaders at GAF were having conversations about how to build a better solar roof. This led to conversations about how to capture a meaningful portion of the 5 million new roofs that are installed each year in the United States. Those conversations touched on what the solar roof could mean for the modern home and for the world.

Then, GAF took action, launching a 10-person incubator to pursue the question of a solar roof. In 2019 parent company Standard Industries launched a new company focused wholly on solar roofing, expanding upon the efforts of that incubator. They called it GAF Energy and hired veterans of solar’s biggest brands, including me. If we solar folks thought we knew roofing, we were in for quite a crash course. 

Our relationship with GAF is one of the things that makes GAF Energy truly interesting. There are any number of energy R&D startups in the Bay Area. But few are tapping into the longevity of GAF, its manufacturing prowess and its vast network of local roofing companies in every community in the country. There are good, hard-earned reasons why GAF installs one in every four roofs in the United States. 

Together, the two companies have the opportunity to fundamentally change not only the way solar is installed, but also the roofs over our heads. More than 100 years ago, GAF introduced the asphalt roof and changed housing in the United States forever. It is now positioned to accelerate the deployment of solar energy.