Mumbai: The total corporate funding in the global solar sector saw an 11% increase year-on-year at $6 billion in the first half of 2019, as against $5.4 billion in the same period last year. This refers to venture capital (VC) funding, public market, and debt financing for the sector, according to a report by clean energy consultancy, Mercom.

“Financial activity was up in the first half of the year and there is optimism in the global markets, which was reflected by climbing solar stock prices," said Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group. “Demand in Europe and the US is up. Solar activity in India is expected to pick up post-elections. However, China remains a wild card."

Top VC/PE deals in the first half of 2019 included $300 million raised by Renew Power, $144 million raised by Avaada Energy, $65 million secured by Yellow Door Energy, $50 million raised by Spruce Finance, $41 million raised by Oxford Photovoltaics, $39 million raised by CleanMax Solar, and the $31 million raised by BBOXX, according to the report. A total of 62 VC investors participated in solar funding in the first half of 2019.

Adding to this, in debt Adani Green Energy Ltd raised $500 million through green bonds, while Canadian Solar Projects, a wholly-owned subsidiary of module supplier Canadian Solar, saw its existing credit facility increased from $36 million to $48 million.

The credit facility has been made available through a syndicate of four finance and leasing institutions, led by Sumitomo Mitsui Finance and Leasing Company (SMFL). Besides this, Japanese trading and investment company Mitsui entered into an agreement with Indian engineering, procurement, and construction company Mahindra Susten, to develop and operate distributed solar projects in India jointly. Mitsui has acquired a 49% stake in Marvel Solren, a Mahindra company that already has a portfolio of 16 MW of distributed solar.

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