Siva Power Getting $10 Million for Thin-Film Solar Technology

(Bloomberg) — Siva Power, a closely held U.S. developer of
thin-film solar panels, is getting $10 million to hone its
technology before pursuing additional funding to build a
factory.

Siva Power received about $7 million from existing
investors including Trident Capital and DBL Investors LLC, and
the city of Wuxi, China, according to a statement Thursday. The
San Jose, California-based company also got a $3 million award
as part of the U.S. Energy Department’s SunShot Initiative,
which seeks to reduce per-watt panel prices to 50 cents by 2020.

Demonstrating Siva Power’s technology will help the company
attract backing for a factory that will be able to produce
panels at a cost of 40 cents a watt, Chief Executive Officer
Brad Mattson said. That may decline to 28 cents per watt within
two years.

“To grow solar, you have to have cheap factories, and
that’s where we’re coming in to solve that problem,” Mattson
said in a telephone interview. “This is the crucial technology
point, to enable the construction of that factory.”

Siva Power said in August of last year it was seeking as
much as $100 million to build a facility that would include the
world’s largest solar production line. He forecast at the time
that construction could start this year and he now expects it
will probably be next year instead.

The company is scouting potential sites in California for
the plant, which will have 300 megawatts of annual production
capacity. That scale, combined with the thin-film technology, is
how Mattson expects to drive down costs.

“We’re taking a rest from raising the $100 million right
now to get this project done and prove the technology,” he
said.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Justin Doom in New York at
jdoom1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story:
Reed Landberg at
landberg@bloomberg.net
Will Wade, Carlos Caminada

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