SolarCity Corp Agrees To $131 Million Tax Equity Fund

SolarcityBy BrokenSphere (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons

SolarCity Corporation (Nasdaq: SCTY) has announced the closure of the fund in order to finance residential, commercial and military solar projects to the tune of $131 million.

SolarCity, whose chairman and major shareholder is none other than Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk, has agreed to the deal with an as yet unnamed financial partner, according to Street Insider.

Driving down the cost of solar power

The new fund will cover the capital cost of solar equipment and installation, helping ordinary homeowners pay less for the power produced by the systems than that provided by local utilities.

“This is the second tax equity fund we’ve closed during the first quarter as we continue our cash generation post–ITC extension and plan to continue our momentum,” said Radford Small, SolarCity’s Executive Vice President, Capital Markets.

According to the GTM Research U.S. Solar Market Insight 2015 report, the solar industry added 7 gigawatts of capacity last year. That it the largest annual total ever and a 16% increase from 2014.

SolarCity pushing ahead with new projects

SolarCity has embarked on a number of projects in conjunction with Tesla, with the latest in Hawaii. The company will use 13MW of Tesla batteries at a site on Kaua’i island.

However the company has been receiving some important downgrades from analysts of late, pushing the company share price down as low as $18. Investment professionals from JPMorgan downgraded the company from Overweight to Neutral.

There are a number of risks associated with the company, and growth has started to taper.

Analyst Paul Coster said that it is hard to get new money into SolarCity because it’s “an early-stage company in an early-stage industry, with a complex, evolving business model that blends together development company and power company economics, poorly expressed in GAAP numbers.”

Coster said that new money typically does not like companies of this kind, and management has been making some complex decisions that are difficult for outsiders to understand. However he did not advise against selling shares in the company.

Keep an eye on the new projects that the tax equity fund will be used to finance. SolarCity is a complicated stock that should be followed closely.

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About the Author

Brendan Byrne
While studying economics, Brendan found himself comfortably falling down the rabbit hole of restaurant work, ultimately opening a consulting business and working as a private wine buyer. On a whim, he moved to China, and in his first week following a triumphant pub quiz victory, he found himself bleeding on the floor based on his arrogance. The same man who put him there offered him a job lecturing for the University of Wales in various sister universities throughout the Middle Kingdom. While primarily lecturing in descriptive and comparative statistics, Brendan simultaneously earned an Msc in Banking and International Finance from the University of Wales-Bangor. He's presently doing something he hates, respecting French people. Well, two, his wife and her mother in the lovely town of Antigua, Guatemala. To contact Brendan or give him an exclusive, please contact him at [email protected]

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