SPI Solar buys Hawaiian assets

SPI Solar has signed a deal to acquire100% of a joint venture in the U.S. state of Hawaii that it operated with Hawaiian Power, LLC (HPL).

SPI said it would acquire HPL’s equity interests and debt related to the joint venture to develop and operate solar PV projects in Hawaii. SPI will own 100% of the company, which currently has about 15 MW under development in Hawaii.

The purchase price of $3.95 million consists of 3 million SPI shares of common stock valued at $1.15 per share and $500,000 million in cash, with closing expected this month.

Separately, SPI has also begun engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services on the first megawatt of a series of projects on the Hawaiian island of Maui. The four initial projects, which comprise 250 kW each for a total of 1 MW, are scheduled for completion in December.

In addition, SPI has also acquired the development rights to an additional 2.5 MW of projects near Kona, Hawaii, bringing SPI’s total solar projects in Hawaii to approximately 17.5 MW, all of which are expected to be completed throughout the remainder of 2014 and 2015.

"This announcement underscores SPI’s commitment to growing our presence in the important US solar market," said SPI Chairman Xiaofeng Peng. "Hawaii, in particular, is among the country’s most attractive markets for PV investment, and we are confident these developments will result in meaningful returns for SPI."

Hawaii has become increasingly attractive for domestic and international solar players. Last week California-based REC Solar announced it had completed six solar energy systems in the state and had this year finished or has under construction a total of 19 MW of projects, with more than 27 MW of solar installations since 2008.