The Israeli Ecoppia, which manufactures autonomous robots designed to clean solar panels, announced Tuesday morning that the Israel Securities Authority has approved the listing of the company’s share for trade on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. According to the company’s announcement, the proceeds from the IPO is expected to amount to NIS 282 million, along with another NIS 157 million following the exercising of options. According to a prospectus recently submitted by the company, its backlog now stands at $ 42 million.
Ecoppia has developed a family of robots that clean solar panels automatically using microfiber and without the use of water. Regular cleaning of the panels is important for generating high output, as dust and dirt accumulation may reduce their power output by dozens of percent. Ecoppia’s robots operate autonomously and clean the panels at night, removing about 99% of the dust that has accumulated on them during the day. One robot is capable of cleaning about 1,200 panels a night.
To date, Ecoppia’s robots have cleaned more than 2 billion solar panels. The company collaborates with leading companies in the solar sector, including the French Engie Group and EDF, the Indian NTPC and Adani Power, Actis Group from the UK, unEdisson/TerraForm from the United States, and the Finnish Fortum.
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In a presentation to its investors, Ecoppia reported that it experienced an average annual increase of 248% between 2014-2020, and that its robots are currently cleaning panels at a total capacity of 5,200 megawatts. The company estimates that the solar panel maintenance market is valued at about $4-5 billion, and is expected to grow in the coming years along with the growth of the entire solar market.
In 2018, the company’s revenues totaled at $4.9 million, and in 2019 they spiked to $8 million. However, Ecoppia’s revenues so far during the first half of 2020 totaled only at $673,000, partly due to a stagnation in the Indian market, which is the company’s main market and is responsible for more than half of its revenues.
Solar stocks have seen significant momentum in world markets over the past year, against the backdrop of the global solar market’s growth, and as many countries adhere to multi-year plans meant to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and dependence on electricity generated from polluting sources. Joe Biden’s election to the presidency of the United States has also added to the momentum of the solar sector, given the president-elect’s commitment to combat the climate crisis and promote renewable energies. For example, the TAN ETF, which contains shares of leading solar companies, including the Israeli Solar Edge, has risen by about 150% since the beginning of the year.