- Increased total commitments to date to £595 million (target £500 million)
- Achieved third close six months after first close, within the two-year fundraising period
- Additional 94MW capacity added to Fund since second close, taking total capital deployed to 269MW
London, February 20, 2022 | NextEnergy Capital (“NEC”), a global solar specialist in the renewables sector, is delighted to announce the third close of NextPower UK ESG (“NPUK ESG” or “Fund”) at £595 million. The Fund has exceeded its target of £500 million and is working towards its hard cap of £1 billion, capturing the positive momentum behind the Fund.
The third close has been achieved six months after the Fund’s first close in August 2022 and two months since its second close in December 2022. This close of NPUK ESG is comprised of commitments from multiple investors; Border to Coast Pensions Partnership; an existing institutional investor topping up their allocation; and the remaining committed capital from the UK Infrastructure Bank, who have now fully committed £250 million into NPUK ESG. Looking forward, the Fund expects to welcome additional investors in due course.
NPUK ESG is a private solar fund focused on unsubsidised new-build solar plants in the UK, which, at hard cap, will produce enough clean energy to power the equivalent of nearly 500,000 households or offset nearly 200,000 carbon-emitting cars on the road each year. From the Fund’s proprietary project pipeline, NEC has already acquired its first five utility-scale solar assets totalling 269MW, of which two are operational. The Fund has deployed capital rapidly, with the first drawdown being seven weeks after the first close.
Michael Bonte-Friedheim, CEO and Founding Partner of NextEnergy Group, said:
“NPUK ESG continues to go from strength to strength and is actively accelerating the deployment of utility scale solar in the UK, providing additional renewable energy capacity, and increasing the UK’s energy independence.
NextEnergy Capital leads the global solar sector in offering innovative access to opportunities identified by a true solar specialist. The momentum is a testament to the NEC’s deep knowledge and detailed preparation, leading to the rapid deployment of capital into our funds. We are expecting to conclude further acquisitions in the near future which will significantly increase the Fund’s commitments.”
Shane Swords, NextEnergy Capital Managing Director and Head of Investor Relations, said:
“We are delighted to have exceeded the Fund target for NPUK ESG at third close, driven by the strong momentum behind the Fund having achieved its first close only six months ago. This close represents another fantastic milestone for NextEnergy Capital as well as the solar sector in quick succession. Investors continue to recognise the value-add that a specialist and experienced manager offers, and we thank our LP base for their continued support.
NPUK ESG is classified as an article 9 Fund under the EU SFDRs, and at its hard cap, will produce enough clean energy to power the equivalent of nearly 500,000 households or offset nearly 200,000 carbon-emitting cars on the road each year.”
NextPower UK ESG
NPUK is a 10-year closed-ended private fund managed by NextEnergy Capital. It is a private unlevered Fund investing in greenfield subsidy-free solar projects, with PPAs, in the UK.
- Launched in December 2021 targeting £500m, to invest into unsubsidised solar plants in the UK with contracted revenues.
- The UK Infrastructure Bank is providing cornerstone match-funding capital for up to £250m.
- Offers investors the opportunity to earn attractive risk-adjusted returns from solar PV infrastructure in the UK.
- Fund returns are then enhanced through NextEnergy Capital’s expertise in technical outperformance, private wire agreements, repowering and storage additionality
- Benefits from access to the Fund’s own secured and proprietary pipeline
- Real, measurable additionality ESG impacts, including biodiversity measures and community engagement
NextEnergy Group was founded in 2007 to become a leading market participant in the international solar sector. Since its inception, it has been active in the development, construction, and ownership of solar assets across multiple jurisdictions. NextEnergy Group operates via its three business units: NextEnergy Capital (Investment Management), WiseEnergy (Operating Asset Management) and Starlight (Asset Development).
NextEnergy Capital (“NEC”) comprises the Group’s investment management activities. To date, NEC has invested in over 350 individual solar plants for a capacity in excess of 2.4GW across it institutional funds. www.nextenergycapital.com
- First Fund: NextEnergy Solar Fund (“NESF”), is a specialist solar+ fund, which is listed on the premium segment of the London Stock Exchange. It currently has an installed capacity of 865MW spread among 99 individual operating assets in the UK and Italy, comprising an unaudited gross asset value of £1,252m. NESF is one of the largest listed solar and energy storage investment companies in the world.
- Second Fund: NextPower II (“NPII”), a private fund made up of 105 individual operating solar power plants and an installed capacity of 149MW, focused on consolidating the substantial, highly fragmented Italian solar market. NPII was successfully divested in January 2022, a 2016 vintage vehicle that generated net IRRs in excess of its gross target of 10-12%.
- Third Fund: NextPower III ESG (“NPIII ESG”), is a private fund exclusively focused on the international solar infrastructure sector, principally targeting projects in carefully selected OECD countries, including the US, Portugal, Spain, Chile, Poland, and Italy. NPIII is a fund that provides a positive social and environmental impact to the countries it has and will invest into. NPIII completed its fundraise with a total of $896m, including an SMA raised. The target of the fund was $750m.
- Fourth Fund: NextPower UK ESG (“NPUK ESG”), is a private unlevered fund investing in greenfield subsidy-free solar projects, with PPA’s, in the UK, as described above.
- Fifth Fund: NextPower V ESG (“NPV ESG”), is a private contracted OECD solar strategy that offers investors the opportunity to earn strong risk-adjusted returns from the solar PV infrastructure asset class with a highly experienced team and a track record of success in OECD-based solar deployment. The strategy will primarily invest in OECD solar assets and adjacent technologies (e.g. battery storage) in the target markets. NPV ESG is targeting $1.5bn in size with a $2bn ceiling.
Further information on the NextEnergy Group is available at: https://www.nextenergygroup.com/
WiseEnergy® is NextEnergy Group’s operating asset manager. WiseEnergy is a leading specialist operating asset manager in the solar sector. Since its founding, WiseEnergy has provided solar asset management, monitoring and technical due diligence services to over 1,350 utility-scale solar power plants with an installed capacity in excess of 1.8GW. WiseEnergy clients comprise leading banks and equity financiers in the energy and infrastructure sector.
Further information on WiseEnergy® is available at: www.wise-energy.com
Starlight is NextEnergy Group’s development company that is active in the development phase of solar projects. It has developed over 100 utility-scale projects internationally and continues to progress a large pipeline of c.10GW of both green and brownfield project developments across global geographies.