With $50M Deal, San Diego Company Combines PV Solar, Financing, and New Roof
One of South Korea’s largest conglomerates led a $50 million Series A financing for OneRoof Energy, a San Diego company with a leasing program that enables homeowners to install photovoltaic (PV) solar tiles on their roofs without paying upfront costs.
The company says Hanwha International, part of the Seoul-based Hanwha Group, is getting a “significant, non-controlling stake” in the San Diego company. The Hanwha Group operates 59 affiliated companies, including Hanwha SolarOne, a global solar manufacturing company. OneRoof says Hanwha’s equity investment will enable the company to fund its rapid-growth plan, which calls for developing the residential solar leasing market by working with local roofing contractors and homebuilders.
OneRoof said it also has closed on an unspecified fund to finance these residential solar projects with Black Coral Capital, a Boston-based cleantech investment firm, and a subsidiary of U.S. Bancorp. “We’re excited about the company as we think their approach of working closely with roofers is the next big step forward in lowering the cost of residential solar,” Black Coral VP Nikhil Garg wrote in an e-mail to Xconomy Boston.
San Diego’s OneRoof says it’s focused on installing PV solar tiles during new home construction or replacement roofs. OneRoof finances the solar installation, arranging a power purchase agreement, so homeowners pay no upfront costs. Instead, they make monthly lease payments to OneRoof. A homeowner’s monthly solar PV lease payment— combined with the promise of a significantly reduced electric utility bill—is intended to be lower than the homeowner’s monthly utility bill prior to the PV solar installation.
The new venture, if successful, appears to provide a new channel for Hanwha SolarOne to sell its PV solar tiles into the American residential market.