Tesla-powered Wal-Mart stores and Home energy storage solutions

Tesla Motors Inc. is signing up big customers like Wal-Mart and Cargill, accelerating efforts to become a leader in energy storage — a new market that’s poised to boost sales and profit at the electric vehicle pioneer.

This week, Tesla will make a deeper push beyond the car business when it unveils batteries for homes and utilities.

“Tesla has been able to install more than 100 projects, really without anyone noticing,” said Andrea James, an analyst with Dougherty & Co. She said Tesla’s energy storage business could be worth as much as $70 to Tesla’s stock. The shares rose 5.3 percent to $220.45 at 2:44 p.m. New York time after climbing as much as 6 percent for the biggest intraday gain in more than two weeks.

“Energy storage on the grid will grow rapidly in combination with renewables,” Tesla Chief Technology Officer JB Straubel said last month at the Vail Global Energy Forum. “Eventually you’re going to have a 100 percent battery electric vehicle fleet, working in tandem with an almost 100 percent renewable electric utility grid full of solar and wind.”

Mack Wycoff, Wal-Mart’s senior manager for renewable energy and emissions, said the company is intrigued by energy storage. “Instead of pulling electricity from the grid, you discharge it from the battery,” he said. “Ideally you know when your period of peak demand is, and you discharge it then.”

Home energy storage solutions
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