Perch Energy, a clean energy technology platform and community solar servicer, has announced a $30 million investment from Nuveen, the $1.1 trillion asset manager of TIAA and a globally renowned real estate investment manager.
This strategic partnership represents the sixth investment in Nuveen’s Global Impact strategy, with the primary aim of accelerating the growth of community solar and extending access to clean energy savings.
Transforming the Landscape of Clean Energy
Perch Energy, the largest pure-play community solar servicer, connects solar developers with consumers, effectively bridging the gap in solar energy accessibility.
The infusion of $30 million in Series B growth investment will play a pivotal role in supporting Perch’s ongoing development, enabling expansion into new sales channels, products, and community solar markets, as well as scaling operational and customer care services.
Additionally, this capital injection will facilitate the growth of management talent and foster strategic partnerships.
“Nuveen’s financial and strategic support comes at a pivotal moment which will not only accelerate Perch’s growth and clear focus on supporting our solar developer clients, but will create opportunities for consumers of all economic backgrounds to join in on clean energy savings, especially the millions of people who can’t afford or don’t have a home suitable for rooftop panels.” – Bruce Stewart, Perch Energy President and CEO
Democratizing Solar Energy for All Income Levels
Democratizing solar energy is a central objective, and to achieve this, the partnership leverages Nuveen’s extensive portfolio of affordable housing units and residential apartments.
The goal is to reach low-to-moderate-income (LMI) consumers and ensure equitable access to the benefits of clean energy.
Nuveen’s established real estate portfolio, combined with Perch’s project pipeline and user-friendly approach, aims to make community solar accessible to a broader audience, particularly those who face barriers to entering the clean energy economy.
Enabling Low-Income Households to Benefit from Clean Energy
This collaboration signifies an immediate opportunity to bring community solar to more low-to-moderate-income (LMI) households, ensuring they benefit from electricity bill savings.
“Community solar is key to providing a renewable energy option to those Americans who do not have access to rooftop solar.
We are excited to bring our impact expertise and broader Nuveen platform to Perch to provide inclusive access to solar energy for households.
Our investment in Perch is emblematic of our focus on investing in companies that deliver both financial returns to our investors as well as an inclusive transition to a low carbon economy.” – Radhika Shroff, Managing Director, Private Equity Impact at Nuveen
Perch Energy’s Rapid Growth
Perch Energy has rapidly expanded its services, currently providing acquisition and management services for over 140 active community solar projects owned by top developers and asset owners.
Their operating portfolio and backlog boast more than 740 megawatts (MW) of contracted capacity.
Since its launch and Series A closing in early 2022, Perch has doubled its client base, expanded into new markets, and grown its contracted annual recurring revenue by approximately 30% in six quarters.
The Promise of Community Solar
Community solar projects represent a crucial step towards clean energy adoption. These locally built projects, connected to the electrical grid, replace energy derived from fossil fuels, thereby reducing carbon emissions and pollution.
Households, small businesses, and large corporations can easily subscribe to local solar projects, receive energy credits on their electricity bills, and reduce their utility expenses.
Importantly, community solar eliminates the need for on-site installations, making it accessible to renters and lower-income families.
Wood Mackenzie forecasts an annual growth rate of 8% for existing community solar markets, with nearly 14 gigawatts (GW) of cumulative capacity expected by 2028, excluding the potential addition of new programs that could significantly expand the sector.
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