General Motors Ventures LLC announced today an equity investment of $7.5 million in Sunlogics PLC, a vertically integrated global solar energy systems provider specializing in solar project development and installation. The investment will create 310 jobs, 200 of them in the Detroit area.
GM also signed commercial agreements with Sunlogics for the installation of solar charging canopies at Chevrolet dealerships and other GM buildings, as well as a power purchase agreement to install large-scale solar arrays at GM buildings and purchase the energy they produce. Specifically, Sunlogics will provide solar-powered electric charging stations for the Chevrolet Volt at 3,000 Chevrolet dealerships in North America.
Sunlogics will use some of the funding to establish its corporate headquarters and open a manufacturing plant in suburban Detroit, and to set up a manufacturing plant in Ontario. Sunlogics is opening its operation in a 140,000 square foot building that was once owned by the Dana Corp.
Sunlogics said it will invest $30 million in the Rochester Hills plant and create 200 jobs. The company considered competing sites in Ohio and Illinois before deciding to locate in Oakland County. The company projected the annual economic impact of the facility to be $90 million.
“Global solar energy use is predicted to more than double by 2016, so we believe that investing in renewable energy is a smart and strategic business decision,” said Jon Lauckner, president of GM Ventures. “And the Chevrolet solar charging canopy project complements our electrification strategy that started with the Chevrolet Volt by helping our cars live up to their fullest green potential.”
Sunlogics’ management has experience developing and operating solar commercial installations in Canada, the United States, and Europe. Sunlogics PLC has a strategic relationship with Sunlogics Power Fund Management Inc. and with other entities to own and operate solar projects developed by Sunlogics PLC.
“The investment in Sunlogics allows GM to strategically partner with a leading solar developer and operator that can help GM drive the use of solar, specifically large-scale solar installations at our facilities,” Lauckner said. “Sunlogics was the ideal choice because it is a vertically integrated company that has a global footprint.”
Said Michael Matvieshen, CEO of Sunlogics: “GM’s solar expansion and financial commitment provides a firm foundation for the growth of Sunlogics’ business worldwide and will bring more sustainable green energy to GM operations. The partnership provides a new level of opportunity to the larger scale industrial solar projects Sunlogics designs, manufactures and constructs. We are looking forward to further assisting our customers in reducing their carbon footprint with sustainable renewable energy.”
As part of today’s announcement, General Motors committed to double its solar energy output globally by the end of 2015.
“Our GM facilities currently house 30 megawatts of solar power, and we are committing today to double that capacity to 60 megawatts over the next few years, which is equivalent to powering 10,000 homes annually,” said Mike Robinson, GM vice president of energy, environment and safety policy. “Not only does renewable energy make good business sense, it helps us continue to reduce the impact our facilities have on the environment.”
GM is the auto industry’s leading user of renewable energy. It has three of the largest automotive rooftop solar power installations in the United States and the world’s largest rooftop solar installation at its car assembly plant in Zaragoza, Spain. Additionally, GM has started construction on a new solar field at its Detroit-Hamtramck facility and completed construction on a solar array on top of its Baltimore Operations facility.
General Motors Ventures LLC is a subsidiary designed to help the company identify and develop innovative technologies in the automotive/transportation sector. GM Ventures has been funded with an initial investment of $100 million, and is exploring equity investments in a number of auto-related technologies and business models. More information can be found at www.gmventures.com.
Sunlogics PLC is a vertically integrated global solar energy systems provider specializing in solar project development and installation. Sunlogics has a strategic partnership with Sunlogics Power Management Fund Inc. (SLMU:US) and with other entities for the purpose of owning and operating solar projects developed by Sunlogics PLC. The scope of the company’s current projects and operations reach to the nations of the world including Canada, United States, Europe and China. More information can be found at www.sunlogics.com/welcome-to-sunlogics.