Husk Power Systems, a Bihar-based company that runs micro power plants on agricultural waste, has raised Series A equity financing of $5 million (Rs 27 crore) from co-investors Bamboo Finance, Acumen Fund, and LGT Venture Philanthropy.

Acumen Fund and Bamboo Finance led the new round of financing. In July 2009, Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ) and Cisco invested $0.25 million in the company, which had also received $0.74 million from Acumen Fund and Oasis Fund in March 2010.

Bio-mass waste

The next month, the firm raised $1.25 million from IFC. DFJ and Cisco are to remain invested in the company having converted their investment into equity.

Husk Power has a 100 per cent biomass waste (rice husk/straw and other crop straws and so on) gasification process for generating electricity and distributing power directly to rural households.

Currently, it has installed 80 mini-power plants that serve over 200,000 people in more than 300 villages.

Husk Power had formed a strategic partnership with Shell Foundation in 2008, which is to continue beyond the fund raise. Husk Power also partnered Overseas Private Investment Corporation to secure a low rate term-loan in June.

“We believe the model can be replicated in many countries. We are excited about their progress and investing in their ongoing growth,” said Jean-Philippe de Schrevel, Chief Executive Officer, Bamboo Finance, on the investment.

With the new equity capital, Husk Power aims to expand operations in rural India and East Africa. The company is also looking to raise up to $4 million of term loan for expansion.

amritanair.ghaswalla@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on October 27, 2012)
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