The second close at £487 million comes only three months after the first close in August. Image: NextEnergy Capital.

NextEnergy Capital (NEC) has reported the second close of NextPower UK ESG (NPUK ESG) at £487 million – 97% of its £500 million target.

The announcement comes only three months after the 10-year closed-ended private fund’s first close in August at £327 million since its launch in December 2021.

The second close consists of commitments from Strathclyde Pension Fund, a Japanese institutional investor and the UK Infrastructure Bank, which provides cornerstone match-funding capital for up to £250 million.

NPUK ESG has said it will continue to raise capital throughout the rest of the funding period or until the fund reaches it’s hard cap of £1 billion.

The fund’s portfolio of existing investors includes LGPS Central Limited, Merseyside Pension Fund, Brunel Pension Partnership and a Middle Eastern Institutional Investor.

NPUK ESG has stated that it expects additional investors following due diligence.

NEC has reported the acquisition of its first three utility-scale solar assets from NPUK ESG’s proprietary project pipelines. The assets –  two of which are operational – provide commitments of an estimated £145 million, using half of the capital raised in the fund’s first close seven weeks after the event.

“Our fundraising momentum comes on the heels of the recent success of the first close which has enabled NPUK ESG to secure its first three acquisitions totalling 175MW,” said Michael Bonte-Friedheim, CEO and founding partner of NextEnergy Group.

“This is a real testament to the NextEnergy Capital team as we continue to successfully realise NPUK ESG’s exciting pipeline of new-build UK, unsubsidised solar. We are expecting to conclude further acquisitions very shortly which will significantly increase the Fund’s commitments.”