North American PV module manufacturer Silfab Solar Inc. netted a second investment round led by ARC Financial Corp. to help fund its upcoming expansion, which includes domestic PV cell and module production at a third facility to open in the United States.
Silfab’s third U.S. solar manufacturing facility is anticipated to be fully operational in 2024 with an initial annual capability of 1 GW cell production and an additional 1.2 GWs of PV solar module assembly. Other details of the new facility, including location, will be announced at a future date.
The $125 million investment from ARC’s Energy Fund 9 includes co-investments by Manulife Financial Corporation, Ontario Power Generation Inc. Pension Plan, CF Private Equity and BDC Capital’s Cleantech Practice.
“Silfab is ideally situated to meet North America’s growing appetite for domestically manufactured cutting-edge solar products,” said Brian Boulanger, CEO of ARC, one of North America’s most established energy-focused private equity fund managers. “Silfab continues to implement an impressive growth plan built around its unwavering commitment to manufacture high-quality products and its decades of innovation and experience.”
Investing in U.S.-made solar cells is a critical component in a clean supply chain to support the manufacturing of solar panels for North American customers. Silfab has grown more than 40 percent since ARC’s initial support. The new facility is expected to generate more than 800 new U.S. jobs.
“Domestic production of solar cells represents a strategic effort to further manage our supply chain and to apply our technical prowess from the ground up for a comprehensive manufacturing process,” said Paolo Maccario, Silfab’s Chief Executive Officer. “We are thankful for our collaborative relationship with ARC and with the Biden administration and its Inflation Reduction Act, both enabling us to accelerate our U.S. manufacturing strategy.”
Silfab has recorded more than a dozen expansions of production capacity, most recently with state-of-the-art PV module assembly plants in the state of Washington. With manufacturing facilities across North America to serve the expanding U.S. market, Silfab has an automated process to pump out high efficiency modules, and it leverages partnerships for next-generation technology applications.
ARC’s first investment, announced in September 2021, enabled Silfab to make further enhancements to production lines at existing Washington facilities in order to deploy PV modules to North American consumer, business, and institutional markets.
— Solar Builder magazine