Former employees speak out about Pink Energy following closure

Former employees speak out about Pink Energy following closure
Published: Sep. 22, 2022 at 8:25 PM CDT
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - On Wednesday night, employees with Pink Energy sent 14 News a letter from their management, letting them know the doors were closing.

[PREVIOUS: Pink Energy reportedly shutting down operations, citing multiple issues]

One day later, former employees are speaking out about conditions within the business, and customers are wondering what the next steps look like.

Devin Arnold studied solar energy for years, and knew it was a passion he wanted to pursue.

It’s how he ended up working at PowerHome Solar, which turned into Pink Energy.

He climbed the ladder, working in both sales and auditing with a team in Fort Wayne he says was excellent.

He didn’t realize there was anything going on out of the ordinary until he saw his company on the news after a salesperson was caught lying.

“There was one scenario where they literally said, ‘Will I receive a power bill after this?’ and he said, ‘No, absolutely not,’ and I’m just like, I was blown away,” says Arnold.

Arnold says he wanted to believe he was doing the right thing, but when he saw that, he realized he needed to get out of the company.

“We were all, you know, kind of blinded by this thought of a better future for Pink Energy customers, and for the environment, and for the nation,” says Arnold.

Of course, there were some patterns he noticed.

“Marketing was geared towards elderly people. I mean, out of 10 sits that I would get directly from the company, about eight of those would be anywhere over the age of 65,” says Arnold.

Pink Energy customers tell us on multiple occasions, that the company was using dishonest sales tactics, promising heavy tax breaks and large cuts to electric bills.

“That was one of the things that we always did,” says Arnold, “they would say, ‘Find their pain point and pound it.’”

Once the sale was secured and the panels were on their homes, customers say they feel like they were left to their own devices.

Arnold says the sellers and the auditors had a script.

“I had a 27-inch monitor that I put vertical, and it ran the whole length of the monitor,” says Arnold.

He and the other employees knew that some of the language in things like their energy efficiency package could be confusing.

Even with them recording calls and sales to make sure they were compliant, muddled verbiage and terminology were used to help make the sale.

Arnold left the company well before it shut its doors, but his only hope now is that his former customers can get some justice, and that people don’t shy away from solar in the future.

He says he still loves solar power and knows it’s a good thing, there were just some bad people who took advantage of it and made it about money.

As for the next steps for consumers, we got ahold of the Michigan Attorney General’s order for investigative subpoenas into Pink Energy.

It says that between their office and the Better Business Bureau, over 1,000 complaints were filed.

It also notes in the conclusion,

“There is probable cause to believe PHS has been using false or misleading representations to gain new customers, through mechanisms prohibited under the MCPA, including false or misleading representations that consumers will generate enough electricity to almost completely offset their electrical bills and will receive large tax rebates in the form of a check as described above, along with potential misrepresentations regarding the quality and/or grade of the solar systems installed at consumer’s homes. These circumstances create authority for an investigation under MCL 445.907.”

14 News reached out to the Indiana Attorney General’s Office, and they say customers with Pink Energy need to file a complaint if they feel they were exploited or had resounding issues.

We also received a statement today from Generac, who was one of Pink Energy’s equipment suppliers.

Read that here:

“Through news reports, we’ve heard that Pink Energy has closed its business. Pink Energy sold and installed some Generac products as part of some – but not all – their solar installations. Customers who need help with Generac components of their solar energy system can reach out to Generac directly. We have – and always will – stand by our products and honor our customer commitments. We’ve been in business for more than 60 years, and we’ve done that by living up to our promises and products.

In recent weeks, leading up to Pink Energy’s closure, Pink Energy – the installer and service provider – made the unilateral decision to stop offering Generac warranty support. As such, we have already contracted with high-quality third-party providers to perform warranty services on Generac’s products, now that Pink Energy will no longer be providing this service to its customers.

We understand that consumers are frustrated with Pink Energy and their inaction. However, Generac remains committed to our customers. Customers with questions about the Generac components of their solar systems can reach out to solarsupport@generac.com or 1-800-396-1281 for assistance.

We ask for your patience as we work to assist customers as quickly as possible.”