A LETTER FROM OUR CEO
In our 2016 annual review, we predicted a big year for SunFunder, including closing more structured receivables finance and commercial-scale solar transactions, arranging our first syndications, launching local currency lending capabilities, expanding into new markets and closing our $50m Beyond the Grid Solar Fund.
We're happy to share the progress we've made on all of these fronts. In 2017 we led our first two syndications as lead investor, arranger and facility agent, totaling $14 million, with PEG Africa and SolarNow, and co-investors Global Partnerships, Oikocredit, Palladium and responsAbility. These deals offer our customers larger and easier financing, and bring in new lenders.
Commercial-scale solar represented 44% of our outstanding loan portfolio as of 31 December 2017, up from 36% as of 31 December 2016. We completed transactions related to rooftop projects, telecom towers and productive use in agricultural – which you can read about in our case studies.
We continue to expand on our market-leading structured receivables finance instruments to help solar home system companies grow – and last year closed our second "SAFI" with SolarNow.
For years our customers have demanded local currency solutions and in 2017 we took a key step by starting a new partnership with hedging provider MFX Solutions – giving us the capability to make local currency loans.
Finally, we continued our geographic diversification. At the start of the year, we had just completed our first loan in West Africa. We ended it with 25% of our outstanding portfolio in that region.
We celebrated our fifth birthday in 2017. The year took us to 37 solar companies financed to a cumulative $39 million, and we grew our loan portfolio by over 100%.
We also made a key physical stride, moving our East Africa office from Arusha to Nairobi. This has gone hand in hand with some outstanding team additions.
In 2017 we welcomed new investors into our Beyond The Grid Solar Fund. They included FMO and BIO, the Dutch and Belgian development banks, who joined their US equivalent OPIC, as well as impact investors including Anthos, Packard Foundation and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. We are also delighted to have started a new partnership with the Mott Foundation to support regional solar companies.
This all sets us up in an exciting position to continue seizing the solar opportunity, delivering energy access and mitigating carbon emissions through innovative financing partnerships.
In 2018, we expect to close more syndications with more lenders, dive deeper into West Africa and other new regions, finance more commercial and productive use solar projects alongside off-grid residential, and complete local currency transactions.
We look forward to working with you to bring these goals to fruition again.
With very best wishes for the year ahead.
Ryan Levinson, CEO
A GROWING TEAM
SunFunder works with investors to unlock capital to finance solar beyond the grid. We offer diversified fixed-income debt fund opportunities, comprising vetted portfolios of emerging market solar investments.
- We ended 2017 having unlocked a total of $62 million for the sector through our Beyond The Grid Solar Fund and other debt facilities.
- We are kicking off 2018 by starting to raise our $100 million Solar Energy Transformation (SET) Fund – the next chapter in our fund strategy.
- SET will focus on catalysing commercial investors into the sector alongside well-targeted concessional, impact and development finance investors. The sector needs a full spectrum of investors to keep evolving and achieve scale.
$50M BEYOND THE GRID SOLAR FUND
We successfully completed the Beyond The Grid Solar (BTG) Fund. The first close was anchored by OPIC, The Rockefeller Foundation and MCE Social Capital. They were followed by FMO, BIO, Sant Foundation, Packard Foundation, Anthos, Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, Baldwin Brothers and others. We are thrilled to have such wonderful partners as we deploy BTG into quality solar loans.
DIVERSIFIED SOLAR LOAN PORTFOLIO
MEET SOME OF OUR BORROWERS
Click on the case studies below to see some of our 2017 transactions
HOW CAN WE HELP YOU?
We offer scalable inventory, working capital, receivables and other structured debt financing from $250k to $5m+ for solar companies in emerging and frontier markets
We have the flexibility, speed and expertise to be your financing partner of choice to help your business grow
Please see here
We offer investors the opportunity to participate in a diversified portfolio of solar investments through our debt funds, backed by our track record and sector expertise
In 2018, our $100 million SET Fund presents a new opportunity for investors with a range of profiles
Please see here