Ichigo ECO started selling electricity from the project this week, following the completion of construction in July. The array was originally scheduled to begin commercial operation in January 2018, according to an online statement.
All electricity will be sold to the regional utility at a feed-in tariff rate of JPY 36/kWh. Ichigo expects the installation to produce net income of JPY 10.6 billion ($97.3 million) in the 20 years to September 2037. It will generate 55.4 GWh of electricity per year, or enough for about 15,300 homes.
The project is situated on an 85.4-hectare plot of land in the village of Showa, Gumma prefecture. The company claims it is the biggest PV project in the Kanto region, as the area around greater Tokyo is known. It did not reveal which manufacturer supplied the 166,716 solar panels used in the project.
Ichigo now operates 100.44 MW of solar at 34 sites, with an additional 27.5 MW in development. The group listed Ichigo Green Infrastructure Investment, a solar-focused investment fund, on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s Infrastructure Fund Market last December.
In April, Canadian Solar raised $47 million via a green project bond with Goldman Sachs Japan to finance the development of 19 MW of solar in Gunma prefecture.