Nelnet has acquired a controlling stake in affiliates of GRNE Solutions LLC (known as GRNE Solar), a Midwest-based solar engineering, procurement and construction (EPC). Nelnet also acquired certain assets from an affiliate GRNE, including some that are currently generating power, and others that are being built.
GRNE designs and builds residential, commercial, and utility-scale systems for solar energy in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri, as well as Colorado. Its solar projects usually produce between 1-5MW of power. GRNE offers services such as battery backup, electric vehicle charging and energy monitoring.
Eric Peterman and Jess Baker, based in Palatine, Ill., established GRNE in 2012. The co-founders will still lead GRNE, but they will retain a minority interest in the company.
“We are excited to partner with Jess, Eric and the GRNE team to accelerate their growth plans and our diversification into solar development,” says Scott Gubbels, Nelnet’s executive director of tax and renewable energy. “The GRNE team has earned a strong reputation in the solar industry for their culture, values and high-quality execution and construction management. Together, we will create a unique solution in the renewable space, including EPC services, financing solutions and subscription management.”
“This acquisition presents an outstanding opportunity for the growth of GRNE and for Nelnet’s continued expansion into the renewable energy space,” states Baker, co-founder and president of GRNE Solar. “With Nelnet’s proven track record for growing and scaling business as well as GRNE’s industry expertise, we will continue to accomplish amazing things. Solar energy is a key component to accomplishing the energy goals of the future, and we are proud to be part of the solution.”