Octopus Investments has successfully funded the installation of 11 large-scale solar projects throughout the UK ahead of the August 1 fast-track feed-in tariff deadline. The investment company has now completed 30MW of projects in partnership with Lightsource Renewable Energy, which was responsible for developing each of the sites. Many other companies are now working against the clock to complete their projects before the fast-approaching deadline.

In total, Octopus funded the installation of 118,000 solar panels, which will deliver around 26GWh each year, or enough to power 7,400 homes. This puts Octopus top of the UK solar investment leaderboard.

Paul Latham at the investment company said, “We have been able to deliver these sites with finance from VCT and EIS funds which have attracted many-small scale investors. When the deadline for FiT qualification was brought forward, it posed some significant challenges and there was a lot of gloom amongst funders and developers.

“Whilst some investment companies withdrew, we held our nerve. Our approach was to look at what could be built within the timescale to qualify for the scheme. It shows Octopus have the capability to raise the funds and with our partners Lightsource, the capacity to deliver successfully.”

Nick Boyle, CEO of Lightsource Renewable Energy said, “It is particularly pleasing to know that our hard work has paid off. By identifying the sites we knew could complete in time and knowing that our funding was in place from gave us confidence to push ahead. As a result, we are now the leading company in the sector and we’re looking forward to further developments in the near future funded by Octopus.”    

Recent figures show that solar power capacity in the UK has risen by more than 18-fold since last year as homeowners and businesses rush to take advantage of subsidies. This rush was only increased by Government’s announcement to cut the feed-in tariff for systems over 50kW in size, prompting 34MW of installed capacity from April to June alone. These installations bring the total figure to almost 122MW.

Projects completed before Monday will continue to qualify for the higher rate providing developers with a huge reason to complete projects as soon as possible. It is expected that several more large-scale parks will be connected to the grid in the next three days.