Spruce Finance, the largest private owner and operator of distributed generation residential solar assets in the U.S., has acquired two new asset portfolios, including the balance of NRG’s residential holdings. The NRG purchase is Spruce’s largest to date and the latest example of the company’s residential solar asset “growth by acquisition” strategy in the U.S.
The NRG portfolio comprises 8,984 systems, totaling 60 MW. Spruce also acquired a portfolio from WEC Energy Group, made up of 1,047 systems, which Spruce had already been managing via its Energy Service Experts (ESE) subsidiary. Together, the acquisitions push Spruce’s total rooftop solar assets to 337 MW, representing year-to-date portfolio growth of 78 percent and over 100 percent portfolio growth in the last 12 months. The company also executed a new $150 million senior credit facility that it will partially draw on to finance both deals.
“We continue to demonstrate momentum and pursue our M&A strategy, proving the value created by consolidating assets in the residential solar space,” said Christian Fong, CEO of Spruce Finance. “The trust and collaboration with our established partners like NRG and WEC Energy Group enables us to successfully execute on our strategy.”
Spruce pivoted from loan origination to asset ownership and created ESE for asset management and maintenance in 2017 after restructuring and receiving an investment from HPS Investment Partners.
The latest acquisitions follow deals from earlier this year that added nearly 112 MW to Spruce’s portfolio of residential solar. Spruce is actively pursuing other acquisition and strategic opportunities in residential, community, and commercial and industrial solar.
— Solar Builder magazine