Case Study — Stapp Interstate Toyota in Frederick, Colorado


When Stapp Interstate Toyota in Frederick, Colorado, faced significant losses following multiple severe hailstorms, the dealership knew it was time for a change. With frequent storms driving up insurance rates and monthly electricity bills as high as $7,000, a defensive canopy with solar panels from VPS was an investment worth making.

Why Canopy Solar Panels?

The purpose of the solar panel canopy was twofold. First, the dealership needed a way to protect its inventory from hailstorms while lowering its monthly insurance expenses. Stapp Interstate Toyota is in an area prone to severe weather, which caused its insurance provider to label the dealership as high-risk. Because of that labeling, the insurance provider did not renew the policy when it expired, and the dealership had to pay high premiums and deductibles with a new insurer. 

Second, the dealership wanted to recoup its initial investment by generating its own electricity. Although the initial expenditure for the canopy was significant, the dealership saw an opportunity to achieve a faster return on investment by lowering monthly electricity bills. 

A Win-Win for Stapp Interstate Toyota

VPS installed a 53,000-square-foot hail canopy with 720 solar panels at the Frederick dealership in early 2020. Since then, the company has generated almost all of its electricity, which adds up to about $7,000 in savings every month. 

Following construction, there's been one hailstorm in the area. The coverings successfully protected each vehicle from damage. What's more, the dealership's previous insurer learned of the project and created a new insurance plan to reward the investment. The reduced risk to the dealership's inventory means lower premiums and a more flexible plan. 

While the VPS canopy accomplished everything Stapp Interstate Toyota hoped it would, the project yielded even more unforeseen benefits. Along with protecting vehicles from hail, the coverings keep the cars cooler in the summer and prevent them from being buried under snow in the winter. The project has also improved the overall customer experience by providing an outdoor showroom where buyers are protected from the elements while they browse. 

The Benefits of ESG

Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) are several of the most important factors for managing a 21st-century business. ESG is a set of criteria for a company's operations to maintain to protect nature's well-being, internal and external human resources, and responsible governance of leadership and shareholder rights.

In the case of Stapp Interstate Toyota, the company balanced all three of its needs with this investment. The decision to invest in solar technology protects the environment's long-term health, helps employees and customers stay safe, and lets shareholders receive a high return on investment (ROI) with electricity bill savings. ESG initiatives should always benefit internal and external stakeholders.

Responsible choices can help companies become certified by organizations like SGS. SGS is the global leader in testing, inspection, and certification services. The organization performs an audit to check companies against their internationally recognized standards through a three-step process. First, they identify the risks of ESG at a company based on internal and external information. Then, they perform an ESG targeted audit and issue a certificate.

As the business landscape becomes increasingly socially driven, it's vital to set goals for boosting ESG campaigns at every company.

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Expert Solutions From VPS

At VPS, we're committed to providing our customers with the ultimate automotive hail protection and covered parking solutions. Our commercial hail protection canopies with solar panels can protect your inventory while harnessing solar power for lower energy bills. Browse our extensive selection of hail shade structures to experience solar panel insurance benefits and increased savings.