NextEnergy Capital raises US$900m for OECD solar PV projects, targets 2.5GW of final capacity

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NextEnergy Capital is targeting 2.5GW of installed capacity through the fund. Image: NextEnergy Capital

Solar investor NextEnergy Capital (NEC) has raised US$896 million in its latest fundraising round that is targeting 2.5GW of final installed capacity in OECD countries, such as the US, Portugal, Spain, Chile and Poland.

The fund, NextPower III ESG (NPIII ESG), exceeded its aim of US$750 million and constitutes the company’s “largest private fund to date”, NEC said, adding it was “the largest OECD-focused solar infrastructure fund globally.”

When fully invested, the fund is aiming to have 2.5GW of installed capacity.

Indeed, NPIII ESG has already started investing and has an installed capacity of 742MW spread across 23 projects and two portfolios, NEC said. It had assessed 35GW of projects and has a further 521MW in exclusivity, with 3GW under review.

“I am looking forward to the continued development of the fund’s portfolio given the depth and quality of its current pipeline,” said Michael Bonte-Friedheim, NextEnergy group CEO.

Investors, which included pension funds, insurance companies, fund-of-funds and family offices, came from nine different countries.

The raise builds on a number of recent announcements from NEC. In December, it secured backing from the UK Infrastructure Bank for a new fund – dubbed NextPower UK ESG – that aims to raise £500 million (US$663 million) to invest in subsidy-free solar power plants in the UK.

“The solar industry continues to show enormous potential and I’m looking forward to announcing further capital commitments for our private funds, notably NextPower UK ESG, in the coming months,” Shane Swords, managing director and head of investor relations, said.

Meanwhile, London-based NEC sold a 150MW portfolio of Italian solar assets to Rome-headquartered investment group Tages last month. The financial terms of the deal were not announced at the time but, in its latest release on the above raise, NEC said the deal has “an enterprise value in excess of €730 million (US$815 million)”.

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