Shell Plc-backed integrated solar energy solutions provider Orb Energy Pvt. Ltd on Thursday, announced raising about $20 million in a follow-on funding round from the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC).
The company has received the first tranche of the loan, amounting $10 million, on Thursday.
Orb Energy plans to deploy these funds to strengthen its in-house financing facility for rooftop and ground-mounted solar customers in India.
“DFC’s second loan to Orb Energy will further expand renewable energy use by SMEs across India. With DFC’s loan, Orb Energy's work will create additional jobs and cut energy costs for businesses, boosting economic growth in a sector that is key to India’s development goals,” said Jake Levine, DFC’s chief climate officer.
Apart from global energy sector giant Shell, the Bengaluru-based solar energy firm is backed by Bamboo Capital Partners, Rianta Capital, Pamiga Finance SA, and Dutch development bank FMO, which proposed an additional equity investment of €1 million in 2019.
It also raised about Rs 95 crore through a combination of equity and debt investments, in 2018, in a bid to bolster its finance platform. Key investors in the fundraising included FMO and US government agency Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC).
Founded in 2006 by NP Ramesh and Damian Miller, the solar energy firm largely operates in India where it employs about 250 people. Its key international markets include Malaysia, Indonesia, Ghana and Kenya, where it has a subsidiary catering to other African countries.
Its portfolio includes solar electricity and water heating solutions, targeting residential, commercial and industrial customers, with a particular focus on small and medium-sized enterprises. The company also manufactures solar photovoltaic panels.
It claims to have sold about 160,000 solar systems in India, with a cumulative installation of about 170 MV of rooftop solar systems.
Several players in the renewable energy market have shored up fundraising, with Waaree Energies Ltd being the latest. The solar panel manufacturer raised nearly Rs 1,000 crore from high net-worth individuals (HNIs) to accelerate production of solar modules and foray into solar cell manufacturing.
Business tycoon Gautam Adani also said in an earlier statement that his conglomerate, Adani Group, had earmarked about 70% of its $100 million capital investment to be made over the next decade, for the energy transition space.