Global Corporate Funding In Solar Power Jumps 55% To $9.8 Billion In Q3 2014

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July–September 2014 saw the highest corporate funding in the global solar power industry since Q1 2011, a recent report by Mercom Capital Group shows.

Total corporate funding that includes venture capital (VC), private equity (PE), debt financing, and public market financing raised by public companies increased to $9.8 billion in Q3 2014 compared to $6.8 billion in Q2 2014.

global solar VC funding chart

“Financing activity was strong all around this quarter whether you look at VC, debt or public markets, and it was the best fundraising quarter since Q1 2011. VC funding in solar has now crossed $1 billion in the first three quarters this year,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group.

Venture Capital funding was also down 28% to $326 million. The largest VC deal saw Sunnova Energy, a service provider in the residential solar power markets, raising $110 million. Other significant deals included Glasspoint Solar pocketing $53 million from a subsidiary of Shell to expand its solar-power enhanced oil recovery operations.

A total of 35 large-scale solar power projects raised $3.7 billion in project funding. The 231 MW Setouchi Solar Project in Japan secured a loan worth $867 million from the group of Japanese banks and financial institutions. A 350 MW solar thermal power plant in Morocco received a loan worth $519 million from the World Bank.

Funds raised through public markets fell by about 24% to $987 million, which included the $577 million IPO of TerraForm Power, a subsidiary of SunEdison.

The number of merger and acquisition deals grew from 25 in Q2 to 32 in Q3. The largest disclosed deal was worth $200 million, where Solargise, a UK-based solar project developer, acquired GRAPP Energies, an Indian EPC and turnkey solutions provider in renewable energy, and its subsidiary Green Ripples.

Project acquisitions worth $582 million were also tracked by Mercom Capital. These projects have a cumulative generation capacity of 1.2 GW. The largest among them was a deal between BluEarth Renewable and Canadian Solar, where the former acquired a 10 MW solar PV project in Canada for $60.3 million.

Mercom Capital also reported that fresh project installation announcements were made for 175 large-scale power plants with cumulative generation capacity of 10.3 GW.

The investment in solar power sector is expected to increase significantly as India, China and other developing countries continue with their aggressive capacity addition policies.

China is on its way to achieve 35 GW installed solar power capacity by the end of next year, and India is planning to significantly enhance its capacity addition targets under the National Solar Mission. South Africa will see several solar power projects take shape that were auctioned under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme while Brazil will also hold solar power project auctions.

Image Credit: Vaikoovery | CC BY-SA 3.0

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Mridul Chadha

Mridul currently works as Head-News & Data at Climate Connect Limited, a market research and analytics firm in the renewable energy and carbon markets domain. He earned his Master’s in Technology degree from The Energy & Resources Institute in Renewable Energy Engineering and Management. He also has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering. Mridul has a keen interest in renewable energy sector in India and emerging carbon markets like China and Australia.

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