Sungevity, one of the top online photovoltaic (PV) retailers and solar service companies, recently shored up $125 million in new financing to boost its business.
According to PV Magazine, $40 million comes as equity financing from Brightpath Capital Partners. Meanwhile, a “leading commercial” bank as well as Energy Capital Partners are providing $85 million in project financing.
Sungevity will use the new financial backing to expand its market share in the solar installation market, which continues to grow in the US. The US Solar Insight Report noted that, in the third quarter of 2012 alone, 684 megawatts of solar PV were installed, a 44% increase compared to the third quarter of 2011.
“Energy Capital is excited to partner with Sungevity to provide an innovative and flexible capital solution to efficiently finance its on-going solar installations,” said Nazar Massouh, of Energy Capital Partners.
“Sungevity’s unique customer acquisition approach, scalable business model and stable cash flow generated by its established customer base, is a natural fit for our diversified energy portfolio.”
Currently, the company provides services to nine US states, including: Arizona, Colorado, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, and New Jersey. Meanwhile, the company has also expanded its international horizons. In 2011, Sungevity bought an equity stake in Dutch solar company Zonline, while last April, it expanded operations into Australia with a joint venture called Sungevity Australia.
“Our ability to attract substantial investment from a list of respected backers is a powerful vote of confidence in our highly scalable growth model and customer-centric approach to doing business,” said Sungevity’s Chief Executive Officer Andrew Birch.
“We believe this new funding will take us into the next phase of growth and allow us to deliver on our mission of building the world’s most energized network of customers who power their lives with sunshine.”
Unlike other solar installation companies that go directly door to door to get a customer quote, Sungevity uses a special satellite and internet-based technology to create iQuote. Within 24 hours after a customer provides their name and basic information, Sungevity then gives the customer an interactive quote. Afterwards, staff aid the customer with a credit check and “e-signing” of the lease, once the credit check has been approved. This helped the company reduce 2012 installation costs by 30%.
It’s nice to see Sungevity take a stake in advancing themselves as not only a top solar provider in the US, but also expanding their market base internationally. With former Greenpeace activist Danny Kennedy at the helm, look for this company to continue to expand further.
A University of Winnipeg graduate who received a three year B.A. with a combined major in Economics and Rhetoric, Writing & Communications. Currently attempting to be a freelance social media coordinator. My eventual goal is to be a clean tech policy analyst down the road while I sharpen my skills as a renewable energy writer. Currently working on a book on clean tech and how to relate it to a broader audience. You can follow me on Twitter @adamjohnstonwpg or at www.adammjohnston.wordpress.com