Edison International has acquired SoCore Energy, a distributed solar developer that specializes in rooftop installations for commercial customers and will help strengthen Edison International’s solar energy development efforts.

Based in Chicago, SoCore focuses on the solar energy needs of retailers like Walgreens and IKEA, as well as real estate investment trusts and large industrial clients. The company currently operates 80 commercial-scale solar sites in 11 states, all of which the company designed and installed.

“SoCore Energy has built an impressive client base and pipeline of solar projects with large retailers and other businesses,” said Bert Valdman, senior vice president of strategic planning at Edison International. “As our industry evolves and distributed solar generation becomes more prevalent, we are looking at additional ways to serve customers in this new environment.”

SoCore Energy was established in 2008 and will help strengthen Edison International’s solar development efforts by expanding its capabilities to install and operate rooftop solar systems for business and commercial customers across the country.

The rooftop solar business has grown rapidly in recent years as the systems have become more affordable. Various financing options, like leases, have eliminated the need for businesses to invest in steep upfront costs of buying and installing equipment. Government incentives —  including rebates and tax credits — are also making rooftop solar generation more attractive to businesses.

“We are exploring the development of a variety of potential energy services that we can offer customers, including distributed generation, energy efficiency and energy storage,” said Valdman. “It’s all about following your customers, knowing their needs and looking for new opportunities to serve them. Our investment in SoCore provides another avenue for us to identify customer needs so that we can develop products and services that provide solutions.”

SoCore’s management team, employees and operations will continue to be based in Chicago.  The company is now a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of Edison International.

“We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Edison International,” said Pete Kadens, president and CEO of SoCore. “Aligning with a well-branded and progressive energy partner will enhance our attractiveness to customers and broaden our suite of offerings.”