Yesterday (Feb. 26) SolarCity announced a new, $750 million fund to support residential solar in the U.S. Included in that fund is a $300 million investment from Google. SolarCity is calling the partnership “Google and SolarCity 2.0” since Google has invested with the residential and commercial installer before.
The $300 million from Google is its largest single renewable energy investment to date, according to SolarCity. It previously invested $280 million with SolarCity in 2011. But overall the search engine giant has already invested more than $1.5 billion (now closer to $2 billion) into renewable energy. It has also invested $100 million to support home solar with SunPower in 2014 and $75 million with Clean Power Finance in 2011 to support home solar.
“We’re happy to support SolarCity's mission to help families reduce their carbon footprint and energy costs," said Sidd Mundra, Renewable Energy Principal at Google. "It's good for the environment, good for families and also makes good business sense.”
The fund will help thousands of homeowners across the country get solar panels for little or no up-front costs through a SolarCity power-purchase agreement (PPA) or lease. While plenty of installers are now offering such services, SolarCity remains the giant and said during its 2014 earnings call on Feb. 17 that it plans to install 920 megawatts to a gigawatt of distributed solar in 2015.
SolarCity discussed the fund in broad strokes during the earnings call. “Our pipeline of tax equity funds has never been better, and we had a record 592 megawatts of un-deployed capacity leading into this call,” said SolarCity Chief Financial Officer Brad Buss, according to a SeekingAlpha transcript. “You saw a bunch of very high profile transactions that we put up publicly, and stay tuned, you will see a couple more,” he then hinted.
Buss also discussed a new revolving facility, basically a self-replenishing fund to support solar home loans. That started with a $200 million capacity and can be increased.Tweet