$31m funding for Chinese photovoltaic product manufacturer

ET Solar has received $50m in funding in the last four months as private equity firms continue to invest heavily in China's alternative energy sector and the environment.

ET Solar Group, a manufacturer of solar components, has received $31 million (€19.5 million) through a Series A-1 redeemable convertible preferred share placement led by China-focussed private equity firms NewMargin Ventures and China Equity Links.

The two firms were joined in the investment by Development Principles Fund, China Environment Fund, CeYuan Ventures, Partners Group and L. Ferrari Overseas Investments.

The $31 million round of funding follows an investment of $19 million in March earlier this year, which was led by China Environment Fund.

Based in Nanjing, China, ET Solar is an integrated manufacturer of photovoltaic parts such as ingots, wafers, modules and dual-axis tracking systems. The company has two manufacturing plants in Taizhou in China, and has offices in Germany, Italy and the US.

The investment will help the company to increase production and sales, and to better meet customer requirements.

Andre Loesekrug-Pietri, managing partner at China Equity Links, said that the firm is impressed with the company’s “market differentiation strategy… and its ability to develop into a global company with local talented management”.

Greg Ye, partner at NewMargin Ventures, said in a statement: “Alternative energy is a major investment focus for our fund, and we have looked at many companies along the solar value chain.” Ye has joined ET Solar’s board.

China Equity Links is a Europe-based growth capital fund focussed on making investments in China. The firm acquires minority stakes in madcap companies with average investments ranging between $4 million to $15 million. It has offices in Beijing and Paris.

Established in 1999, NewMargin Ventures is a China-focussed venture capital firm that invests in IT and related sectors, sustainable growth technology, healthcare and high margin manufacturing. The firm manages assets of $520 million.