Panda Power raises $420 million for solar and natural gas projects

The power generation development firm is taking a glass half full attitude to its recent fund despite missing its goal by nearly $400 million.

Panda Power Funds closed its private equity fund after raising $420 million to fund solar and natural gas power generation projects -- far short of its intended $800 million goal.

Panda Power announced this week plans to use the funds to develop or acquire U.S. natural gas-fueled power plants and utility-scale solar projects in select states. Investors in the Panda Power Generation Infrastructure fund include public and corporate pension plans and other institutional investors, according to the firm.

The independent power development company reportedly doesn't view its fundraising shortfall as a failure, instead it's taken a glass half full attitude. Bill Pentak, the firm's vice president for investor relations and public affairs told Dow Jones, said the firm managed to raise enough money to execute their plan despite kicking off the fund amid the recession. The firm can now turn its attention back towards investing in power generation projects.

The Panda Fund already has an extensive pipeline of projects including two natural gas power generation plants in Texas that represent about $2 billion in financing. This recently closed fund's first investment was to develop the $94 million, 20 megawatt Pilesgrove Solar Farm in New Jersey. The solar project, located on 110 acres, is a joint venture between Panda Power Funds and Con Edison Development, a subsidiary of energy company Consolidated Edison.

[via: Dow Jones]

Photo: Flickr user Pocheco

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This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com