Blackstone enters the electric bus and van race, plus the return of seed-stage solar investing – pv magazine USA – About Your Online Magazine


European counterpart for Tesla solar roofs

SunRoof, a Swedish-Polish startup that develops solar roofs and facades, raised $ 2.3 million in a seed round led by SMOK Ventures which included investors LT Capital, EIT InnoEnergy, FD Growth Capital and KnowledgeHub. The company’s ambition “is to become a European counterpart to Tesla”, according to SunRoof CEO Lech Kaniuk. If the CEO is talking about Tesla sunroof, that would mean a reluctant launch of an expensive beta product. SunRoof claims to have built more than 100 roofs in Sweden, Norway and Poland.

Solar Coating

SunDensity raised $ 2.5 million in early-stage financing for a coating technology that claims to increase solar panel energy production by 20%. The SunDensity coating converts blue light that cannot be used by solar cells into red light that can be more easily converted into electricity. The company’s first focus will be on the market for new utility-scale panels. The startup claims to have signed wholesale distribution agreements with eight glass manufacturers. Clean Energy Ventures led startup financing along with Luminary, the Rochester Angel Network and LaunchNY.

Blackstone enters the EV fight

Arrival, a UK-based startup that builds electric buses and vans, raised $ 118 million from investment giant BlackRock. The transaction values ​​the company at about $ 3.5 billion, according to the Wall Street Newspaper. The startup is supported by Hyundai and Kia and is preparing to build electric delivery vans for UPS, also an investor, in small-scale factories in the USA and the United Kingdom. According Forbes, BlackRock’s support brings full Financing for Arrival to more than $ 230 million. The company says that “it can sell electric buses at much lower prices than the heavyweight ones in the industry”, such as BYD and Proterra.

Proterra raises $ 200 million

Proterra, an electric bus startup that also manufactures batteries and power systems for heavy vehicles, raised $ 200 million led by Cowen Sustainable Investment, along with Soros Fund Management, Generation Investment Management and Broadscale Group. Proterra transit buses have provided more than 14 million service miles to more than 120 transit customers, according to the company, which claims to have sold and delivered more battery powered electric transit buses in North America than any other manufacturer. Proterra raised more than $ 700 million from investors, including G2VP, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Constellation Ventures, Mitsui & Co., BMW i Ventures, Edison Energy, Federal Transportation Administration, risk arm of General Motors and Tao Capital Partners .

Low-power motors and switches

Linear Laboratories, maker of an efficient electric motor, raised $ 6 million in financing for industrial, appliance and mobility applications. Investors included Champion Hill, Chris and Crystal Sacca’s Lowercarbon Capital, Kindred Ventures, Gen Fukunaga, Duke Angel Network, Spike Ventures and Moving Capital.

Menlo Microsystems, a developer of energy-saving micro-mechanical switches and relays, won $ 44 million in a Series B financing round led by 40 North Ventures. Other investors in the company include Corning and Paladin.

Floating solar raises $ 10.6 million

Norwegian floating PV specialist Ocean Sun successfully listed on the Merkur Market, a multilateral trading facility that offered small and medium-sized businesses access to the Oslo Stock Exchange and raised $ 10.9 million.

The Ocean Sun project for floating photovoltaic projects in locations close to the shore and in semi-protected waters consists of a floating float ring anchored to the seabed with four mooring points and twelve cables. In mid-July, the company signed an agreement to develop pilot projects on the 2.1 GW floating solar site planned near the tidal plain of Saemangeum, off the coast of the Yellow Sea. “We will normally charge a small license fee per watt installed on each project,” said the CEO. According communicating inside pv magazine.

Norwegian Sun, floating PV specialist, plans IPO

Array Technologies hot IPO

In an optimistic IPO scenario, shares of the second largest global manufacturer of solar trackers Array Technologies jumped over 65% in its expanded public offering on its first trading day. The IPO valued the solar company at about $ 2.8 billion. Jeff Krantz, The company’s CCO, just said pv magazine that the IPO provides a new source of capital to expand the company in the world of solar energy and offers the opportunity to acquire other companies if there is a strategic adjustment. Oaktree Capital, an investor, will hold various positions on the board of the public company.

Paula Fonseca