SolFocus Bulks Up

SolFocus Inc., a Palo Alto, Calif.-based developer of solar concentrator photovoltaic systems, has raised $11.6 million in new Series A (for its European subsidiary) and Series B funding. This follows a $52 million initial close announced in September. New Enterprise Associates led the deal, and was joined by Moser Baer India, Metasystem Group, NGEN Partners and Yellowstone Capital. Get more info.


SolFocus Europe today announced the selection of its Board of Directors. The board includes global leaders from the electronics, energy, clean tech and financial sectors. Also today, SolFocus Europe announced the completion of its Series A financing and SolFocus, Inc. announced the completion of its Series B round. The final tally for these completed financings is US$63.6 million (Euro 43.3 million), including the initial close of US$52 million (Euro 38 million) announced by SolFocus in September.

Madrid-based SolFocus Europe was launched in September 2007. SolFocus designs and manufactures solar energy solutions, including concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) systems, intelligent tracking systems, and solar thermal technology.

“The Board of Directors we have assembled for SolFocus Europe is an esteemed group,” commented SolFocus Chairman Gary D. Conley. “Each board member brings expertise from an area critical to directing the company in establishing itself as the premier supplier of clean, renewable solar energy to the European community. We are privileged to have such a team guiding SolFocus Europe on what promises to be a very exciting journey.” Board members include:

Paulina Beato: Ms. Beato is a business leader and economist. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of REPSOL YPF and as Chairperson of Audit Committee. Ms. Beato serves the Inter-American Development Bank, International Monetary Fund and held senior positions, CEO and Director, at Red Electrica de Espana (National Public Grid) and Banco Espanol de Credito, among other leading institutions, and has published a wealth of papers on economics, energy and policy.

Gary D. Conley: Mr. Conley is the CEO and Chairman of SolFocus, Inc. He founded the company in 2005 to pursue the commercialization of CPV technology. His extensive background includes technology, innovation, entrepreneurship, corporate turnarounds, and globalization. He led the rapid development of SolFocus from being a two-person start-up to nearly 100 employees, with global operations, and collaborative relationships around the world.

Germano Fanelli: Mr. Fanelli is Chairman of Arrow EMEASA (Europe, Middle East, Africa and South America). His vision and expertise in global markets, contacts throughout the region, and proven track-record in rapid market growth and expansion will be of great value to SolFocus Europe as it establishes its position in the market and expands geographically throughout the region.

Ravi Khanna: Mr. Khanna is CEO of Moser Baer Photovoltaic Ltd. (MBPV), a subsidiary of Moser Baer India, Ltd. The company’s investments in the PV industry are among the largest in the world, and have resulted in the creation of a world-class technology center which rapidly absorbs technology and delivers solutions to its partner companies and customers world wide.

Scott Sandell: Mr. Sandell is General Partner with New Enterprise Associates (NEA), a leading venture capital firm with US$8.5 billion in committed capital. NEA is ranked consistently among the top firms in investments and portfolio IPOs. For NEA, Mr. Sandell focuses on investments in information technology and alternative energy, is responsible for the firm’s activities in China, and sits on the Board of Directors of several companies. Previously Mr. Sandell was with Boston Consulting Group, C-aTS Software, and Microsoft Corporation.

About SolFocus

SolFocus (including SolFocus, Inc. and SolFocus Europe, Inc.) develops and markets solar energy solutions which enable a dramatic reduction in the cost of delivering renewable solar energy, and will ultimately compete with fossil fuels in several large, multi-billion-dollar energy markets. The company’s products include concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) systems, intelligent tracking systems, and solar thermal technology. SolFocus is a leader in global solar innovation through collaboration with universities, research institutes, and corporate partners, and led the formation of the CPV Consortium in 2007. The company’s Technical Advisory Panel (TAP) is chaired by Nobel Laureate Arno Penzias, and includes Dr. Roland Winston (UC Merced), inventor of non-imaging optics, and Dr. Sarah Kurtz (NREL) co-inventor of the multi-junction cell. The company raised US$95 million in venture capital including its initial Series A funding in 2006. In July 2007, SolFocus acquired tracker innovator INSPIRA, S.L. and in September formed SolFocus Europe. SolFocus has operations in Mountain View, Calif.; Madrid, Spain; and Mesa Ariz.