Home / Industry / Manufacturing /  Waaree Energies raises 1,000 crore

NEW DELHI : Solar panel manufacturer Waaree Energies Ltd has raised nearly 1,000 crore from high net-worth individuals and family offices to expand production capacity for solar modules and foray into solar cell manufacturing, chief financial officer Hitesh Mehta said.

“Most of the capital has been received from the private players and family offices. Even the promoters of the company put in additional amount. Around 90% of the investment is from private investors and 10% from the promoters," Mehta said in an interview, but did not disclose the names of investors.

“Investments usually come for the renewable generation business and not equipment manufacturing. This is the first time private investors have put in money into a company for manufacturing in India," he added.

Mehta said the funds will be used to ramp up solar module production from 5 gigawatt (GW) to 9 GW by March 2023. It is also planning to start manufacturing of solar cells by September 2023. Waaree has acquired 100 acres to set up a new facility at Chikhli in Navsari district, Gujarat. The plant will have production capacity of 7 GW of solar modules, and 5.4 GW of solar cell .

Mehta said Waaree will also explore options to raise debt to fund its expansion plans.

Demand for solar modules and cells have been on the rise, but supplies have remained muted in India. In March 2021, the Centre had announced a 40% basic customs duty on solar modules and a 25% duty on solar cells, effective 1 April 2022. The decision to increase duty was in line with the government’s stand on reducing dependence on imports, especially from China, and encourage domestic production.

Mehta said the demand supply mismatch persists and will ease once capacities are added in the next 12-18 months. The company exports 20-24% of its production, mostly to Europe, Africa and Gulf countries. He said the company will look at maintaining exports at similar levels and may also consider partnering with interested firms in other countries.

Waaree had recently signed an agreement with Steinbeis Centre for Technology Transfer India and DSE Consortium Germany for green hydrogen. According to the MoU (memorandum of understanding), the three entities will establish an assembly line to produce electrolyzers and polysilicon. The company is also working on diversifying into green hydrogen production and battery storage solutions.

Investments in the renewable energy sector have gained momentum, with the push for green energy and the government’s commitment to set up 500 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2030, and net zero carbon emission by 2070.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rituraj Baruah

Rituraj Baruah is a senior correspondent at Mint, reporting on housing, urban affairs, small businesses and energy. He has reported on diverse sectors over the last six years including, commodities and stocks market, insolvency and real estate. He has previous stints at Cogencis Information Services, Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) and Inc42.
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