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Sun shines on energy bid

OSBORNE Park-based manufacturer Solar Energy Systems is seeking $5 million through a public float to finance its efforts to take a bigger slice of the fast growing renewable energy market.

The move to sell 50 per cent of the company to new investors comes after the company’s own turnover has jumped to $500,000 for the six months ending June 30 from $300,000 in the previous six months of 1999-2000 and just $100,000 in the last half of 1998-99 when it started manufacturing.

SES products include equipment for solar generation, electronic solar tracking and the what it claims is the simplest solar pump in the world, all of which can be used in remote or underdeveloped regions. The company claims licensing agreements and joint ventures are likely to help boost sales around the globe.

Among the statistics quoted by the company are:

* World Bank estimates of a $360 billion investment in the Third World water industry over 10 years;

* Solar energy market growing at 20 per cent a year;

* Listed renewable energy companies have on average doubled or tripled their market capitalisations in the past nine months;

* US venture capital devoted to the sector is set to almost double to $1.6 billion this year;

* The Federal Government is set to provide up to $1 billion in funding during the next four to five years.

The company said it has already had sales through a French NGO to East Timor and has established contacts in South America, Africa, the Middle East and China.

WA farmers have bought about 140 solar powered pump stations which are worth between $2800 and $10,000 each.

In a float put together by West Perth corporate adviser Mooney & Partners, the company has decided not to involve an underwriter.

SES is offering 20 million shares at 25 cents each with a 1 for 4 free option.

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