Since launching in 2012, SunFunder has sought to address the needs of off-grid communities by providing finance for solar energy. SunFunder wants to “unlock the solar revolution” in emerging markets something that benefits both the community that receives financing and the rest of the world since it shifts energy from fossil fuels to renewable energy. This social impact crowdfunding site matches the commercial aspect of solar energy to impact investors. While the demand is profound the lack of market knowledge and local expertise is limited. That is where SunFunder comes in.
SunFunder is complimenting their crowdfunding activity having launched their first Solar Empowerment Fund (SEF) in Sept 2013. This offer created an opportunity for accredited and institutional investors to invest in a diversified, vetted, and high-impact portfolio of off-grid and grid deficit solar projects with an attractive risk/return profile.
SunFunder is now in the process of fundraising for SEF II, a $5 million facility with an initial $1 million Solar Note issuance that closed in April 2014.
Sunfunder describes the benefits for SEF II investors:
- Short-term debt with competitive returns: Investors earn an annual interest over a short Note tenor
- Reduced risk: Protection by First Loss Capital
- Diversified, high-impact portfolio: Investors support a diverse, tangible portfolio of high impact off-grid and grid deficit solar projects and businesses in multiple countries/regions.
SunFunder notes that to date, their SEF investors have had 0% default rate on their loan portfolios, and repayments from solar customers across the board (including crowdfunded projects) have all been paid in full and on time.