One of the world’s leading solar EPC has filed the draft red herring prospectus as part of its initial public offering at Indian bourses. Sterling & Wilson Solar Limited is a subsidiary of the Shapoorji Pallonji Group.
According to Indian business daily Economic Times, the 150-year old Shapoorji Pallonji Group is looking to raise $650 million through the sale of some stake in Sterling & Wilson Solar. Funds raised through the IPO are expected to be used for reducing debt.
Sterling & Wilson diversified into the solar EPC business in 2011 just as the Indian solar power market was seeing its first green shoots. While most of the EPC companies in India concentrated on the Indian business, which in itself represents a huge market opportunity, Sterling & Wilson diversified geographically, expanding into rapidly growing market of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).
The geographical diversification was undertaken to such an aggressive extent by the Sterling management that now 75% of the company’s business comes from international markets. IHS Markit reported Sterling & Wilson as one of the largest solar EPC with 3% market share globally in 2018.
Some of the significant solar power projects that Sterling & Wilson has worked or is currently working on include the 1.17 gigawatt Sweihan solar PV project in Abu Dhabi, a 50 megawatt project that is part of the 1.8 gigawatt solar power park in Egypt, a 90 megawatt solar PV project and associated transmission infrastructure in South Africa, a hybrid and energy storage project in western Africa, a 170 megawatt solar power project in Morocco, and 200 megawatt solar power projects in Kazakhstan.
Last year, Sterling & Wilson Managing Director announced that the company is looking to further diversify into the wind energy and power transmission sector. The company may also be working on setting up a battery manufacturing plant in India.
The geographical diversity of Sterling & Wilson’s operations is an important aspect of the company’s IPO plans. We recently covered a story that renewable energy developers in India have shelved their IPO plans and are now looking to sell their operational assets to raise fresh funds.