Chint Solar, a Chinese solar power producer, has raised $50 million in first-round funding co-led by Cybernaut and Shanghai Alliance Investment Ltd. Chint Solar was formed in 2006 as a subsidiary of Chinese electrical and power conglomerate Chint Group. It reached 100 MW of production capacity in July 2008, and expects to reach 1,100 MW production capacity by 2012.
Chint Solar announced that it has successfully closed a US$50 million round of fundraising – in the worst global financial conditions in decades – from a syndicate of global investors.
Cybernaut and Shanghai Alliance Investment Limited were lead investors in this round. A number of notable overseas and domestic funds formed the rest of the syndicate.
Founded in 2006 as a subsidiary of the Chint Group, China’s leading electrical and power conglomerate, Chint Solar reached 100 MW of production capacity in July 2008, and is on track to increase exponentially to 1,100 MW production capacity by 2012.
Chint Solar’s main product line features both thin film and crystalline silicon photovoltaic cells and modules. The company has made an aggressive push to focus its business on amorphous microcrystalline (a-Si/µc-Si) tandem junction thin film, a next-generation solar technology with dramatically lower costs-per-watt than conventional crystalline silicon.
Through a-Si/µc-Si thin film, Chint Solar expects to be among the first companies in the world to reduce PV module cost to below US$1 per watt, and total PV system cost to below US$2 per watt, a critical industry benchmark known as “grid parity”.
“The successful closure of this round of fundraising under unprecedented and turbulent financial conditions that witnessed the near-total shutdown of global capital markets is a testament to the superiority of Chint Solar’s technology, the viability of Chint Solar’s business strategy, and the strength of Chint Solar’s team,” said Dr. Liyou Yang, CEO of Chint Solar.
“We are very pleased to lead this effort,” said Min Zhu, founder and Managing Partner of Cybernaut. “Chint Solar’s technical strengths are well-known, and its partnership with Chint Group, China’s leading electrical manufacturer, makes it the only photovoltaic company in the world that can achieve a complete systems-level integration. I am confident that, as a result, Chint Solar’s products will be among the highest in reliability and lowest in cost in the industry, and Chint Solar will rapidly become one of the world’s leading photovoltaic solutions providers.”
Cybernaut is a leading global venture capital firm based in Hangzhou, China. Founded in 2005 by Mr. Min Zhu, the co-founder and former President and CTO of WebEx Communications, which was acquired by Cisco Systems in 2007 for US$3.2 billion, Cybernaut has an outstanding track record and has won numerous accolades including the Forbes 2008 China’s Most Influential VC.
Shanghai Alliance Investment Limited (SAIL) is a leading domestic investment company and designated asset manager for China’s State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) in the areas of high-tech and financial services.