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2017 Q4 and Annual Solar Funding and M&A Report

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Click here to download our 2017 Q4 and Annual Solar Funding and M&A Executive Summary.

Total global corporate funding into the solar sector, including venture capital/private equity (VC), debt financing, and public market financing raised came to $12.8 billion, a 41 percent increase compared to the $9.1 billion raised in 2016.

Solar Funding 2017 Mercom

“A strong fourth quarter pushed overall funding higher in 2017. Higher installation levels around the world, the lack of threat to the solar investment tax credit, lower than expected tariff recommendation by U.S. ITC, strong debt financing activity, and over a billion dollars in securitization deals helped the solar industry have a much better year in terms of financial activity compared to 2016. After several challenging years, most of the solar securities were up in 2017 reflecting overall positive sentiments around the solar industry even as several Chinese manufacturers decided to go private. Of course, all this could change swiftly if President Trump decides to impose higher tariffs in the trade case,” commented Raj Prabhu, CEO and Co-Founder of Mercom Capital Group.

Global VC investments came to $1.6 billion in 99 deals in 2017, up 30 percent from the $1.3 billion raised by 78 deals in 2016 – led by several large private equity deals in India.

There were 162 VC/PE investors that participated in funding rounds in 2017, with eight involved in multiple rounds: Engie, Avista Development, DSM Venturing, InnoEnergy, Innogy, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Shell, and Techstars.

Announced debt financing in 2017 surged to $9.5 billion compared to $6 billion in 2016. There were six securitization deals in 2017 totaling $1.3 billion. Securitization deals surpassed the $1 billion for the year, a first.

Large-scale project funding announced in 2017 reached a $14 billion raised in 167 deals, compared to $9.4 billion raised in 133 deals during 2016. A total of 161 investors funded about 20.5 GW of large-scale solar projects in 2017 compared to 5.9 GW funded by 153 investors in 2016.

$2.4 billion was raised by 16 residential and commercial solar project funds in 2017 which was down 50 percent compared to $4.9 billion raised by 30 funds in 2016. The top fundraisers were: Sunlight Financial, Sunnova, Solar Mosaic, SolarCity, and Spruce Finance. Since 2009, solar residential and commercial firms offering leases, PPAs, and loans have raised more than $24.8 billion in lease and loan funds.

Mercom Capital Group’s Quarterly Solar Funding and M&A Reports are comprehensive high-quality reports delivering superior insight, market trends and analysis. These reports help bring clarity to professionals in the current financial landscape of the solar industry.


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The Q4 and Annual 2017 Solar Funding and M&A report contains year-over-year (YoY) and quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) information on market activity displayed in easy-to-digest charts, graphs and tables, as well as data-driven analysis covering:

  • Venture capital funding deals, including top investors, YoY and QoQ trends, and a breakdown of charts and graphs by technology, sector, stage and country;
  • Large-scale project funding deals, including top investors,YoY and QoQ trends and breakdown charts and graphs by technology and country;
  • Public market financings, including equity financings, private placements and rights issues;
  • Debt and other funding deals, as well as YoY and QoQ trends;
  • Securitization deals;
  • Residential and commercial project funds;
  • Large-scale project acquisitions and active project acquirers;
  • Large-scale project announcements in various levels of development throughout the world;
  • Mergers and acquisitions (M&A), including YoY and QoQ trends, a breakdown of charts and graphs by technology and sector, as well as project M&A activity;
  • New solar and cleantech funds;
  • IPOs, new public listings;
  • New large-scale project announcements;
  • Large-scale project costs per MW.

This report also contains comprehensive lists of all announced Q4:

  • VC funding, debt financing, public equity financings, and project funding deals;
  • VC and project funding investors;
  • M&A transactions;
  • Project acquisitions by amounts and megawatts;
  • M&A, and project M&A transactions;
  • Large-scale project announcements.

There were 598 companies and investors covered in this report. It is 148 pages in length, and contains 115 charts, graphs and tables.

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