A Cambridge, England cleantech company, Enecsys, closed a £25 million ($41 million) series B round which the company plans to use to take its solar microinverter technology to more international markets including Canada and the U.S.
Solar microinverters convert the DC power that’s produced by solar panels into AC power, that can be either be used on-site, or sent back to the electrical grid. The Enecsys microinverters are designed for residential use and smaller, commercial solar installations instead of for huge, utility-scale solar farms.
Climate Change Capital led the round with an investment of £11 million ($18 million) in Enecsys. The remaining £14 million ($23 million) came from the company’s existing backers: Wellington Partners, NES Partners and Good Energies. To date, the company has raised about $55.3 million in venture capital.
According to a company press statement, Enecsys’ solar inverters are: “installed on the rail behind solar modules, either one inverter per solar module or one for every two modules.” The technology is meant to help the owners of installed, solar PV systems to: monitor and optimize the performance of their solar panels, remotely via web apps; and to harvest more power from the panels than alternative technologies like DC wiring around an installation would. The company claims it can harvest 5 to 20 percent more energy than a traditional set-up.
In a market that’s increasingly commoditized, a huge number of microinverter companies have attained significant venture funding, including: Enphase, Petra Solar, SolarBridge and DirectGrid. The startups also compete against incumbent, global players like SMA Solar, which makes inverters and software that help optimize the performance of both solar and wind systems, and Transform Solar, which makes and installs a wide range of solar technology. Only a few can lead the market, of course.