Tue, Feb 11, 2014 - Page 12 News List

US company to offer retail investments in residential solar

By Ehren Goossens  /  Bloomberg, New York

A technician installs solar panels on the roof of a house in California last October.

Photo: REUTERS

Mosaic Inc, the operator of an online financing system that lets individuals invest in commercial solar systems, is expanding into residential projects.

Mosaic agreed to provide financing to Sungage Financial Inc, a Boston-based developer that will loan the funds to Connecticut residents who want rooftop solar systems, according to a statement today. Connecticut’s Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority, the state’s green bank, is providing an initial US$5 million to fund originations.

The arrangement will provide one of the few opportunities for individuals to invest in renewable-energy projects. The 15- year loans are backed by the power systems and may be repaid in part by savings from the owners’ utility bills, said Sylvain Mansier, co-founder and chief financial officer of Sungage.

“The payments can be covered by the asset that they’re purchasing,” he said in an interview. “We can’t really think of another consumer transaction that has this dynamic.”

People who use Mosaic’s system may choose to invest in individual commercial projects or in the pool of funds provided to Sungage. Investors in the residential pool will be offered a roughly 5 percent yield over the 15-year term, according to Mosaic.

The Oakland, California-based company has financed more than US$6 million in commercial solar projects. Hampshire Foundation Inc has committed to invest US$1 million in residential systems through Mosaic.r

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