Malaysia’s Plus Solar mulling options to rope in PE, other investors, says CEO

Solar Panels. Photo: Pixabay

Malaysia-based solar installation company Plus Solar Systems Sdn Bhd is mulling options to invite private equity (PE) as well as equity fund investors to join as its new shareholders to support its business plans, its CEO Ko Chuan Zhen told DealStreetAsia in an interview.

Plus Solar Systems, owned by four individual investors including Ko, has been approached by a slew of interested parties from Southeast Asia, South Asia and European countries, whose names could not be ascertained.

“We’re still reviewing these options and looking at the right time in welcoming new partners,” Ko said, adding the company is open to divesting stake to get additional value from investors, which go beyond mere ‘financial support.’

Plus Solar’s plan to rope in new investors comes at a time when it is aggressively looking to ramp up operations. The company has set a target to increase its total solar power capacity to 200MW by 2020 from the current level of 150MW. Over the next three years, the company targets to achieve a total capacity of over 500MW.

As a solar power developer, Plus Solar is rather optimistic in achieving the target as its business is in line with the Malaysia government’s plan to have 20 per cent or 6GW of the country’s total power from renewable energy sources.

Of this, the government “targets 4GW …. (to) come from solar source,” Ko said.

Going forward, over the next 1-2 years, Plus Solar’s expansion plans also include foraying into neighbouring countries such as Myanmar, Cambodia and Vietnam. The company is currently undertaking solar project development in Malaysia alone.

Following its expansion plan and achieving a target of 500MW capacity, Plus Solar may hit the bourse and pursue an initial public offering (IPO). The company’s local peer Solarvest is on the verge of conducting an IPO on Bursa Malaysia’s ACE Market, in which it targets to raise around 35 million ringgit.

In October 2019, Plus Solar forged a partnership with the United Overseas Bank (UOB) for the U-Solar programme, which is a part of the bank’s regional plan to help companies and consumers switch to solar power. The other two local solar power developer ERS Energy and Solarvest are also joining the partnership programme, according to UOB’s website.

Plus Solar expect to book more than 150 million ringgit ($35.9 million) in revenue by the end of 2019.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.