8minuteenergy retains Merrill to advise on project funding drive

8minuteenergy Renewables has retained BofA Merrill Lynch as its financial adviser as it looks to raise capital to underpin growth of its 5.5GW pipeline of US large-scale PV projects, including 2GW targeted for Texas.

The San Francisco-based developer said its “near-term” projects alone are expected to have an enterprise value in excess of $1bn. These include more than 500MW of wholly-owned “near-shovel-ready” projects with long-term power off-take agreements.

As the US solar market expands, chief executive Martin Hermann said the company is “well positioned” to capitalize on its growing pipeline to deliver growing amounts of clean energy into the grid.

Market expansion is being driven by the increasing price competitiveness of utility-scale solar, the ITC extension and various de-carbonization policies.

The company’s projects had earlier secured in excess of $1bn in third party investment.

“As we continue to expand and build upon our proven, levelized cost of energy-centric platform, we are looking for efficient investment capital to fund a variety of interesting development and long term ownership opportunities in the US,” said President Tom Buttgenbach.

In Texas, 8minute is confident it can compete on price in the dominant ERCOT market with natural gas and wind.

Solar is only now gaining traction there as declining prices and more availability of generation capacity have drawn strong interest from utilities, distributors and non-traditional buyers such as companies and municipalities.