US-based TerraPower has announced the close of an equity raise that yielded at least $750 million. The fundraise was co-led by SK Inc and SK Innovation (collectively SK) and TerraPower’s founder Bill Gates. SK invested $250 million. SK Group is among South Korea’s largest energy providers and the second-largest conglomerate. Additional funding will come from other investors.
TerraPower is growing rapidly, supported by a US Department of Energy’s Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program (ARDP) award and the construction of the NatriumTM demonstration plant at a retiring coal facility in Wyoming. Part of the ARDP award requires a match of 50% of project costs, up to $2 billion.
In May, SK Inc signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with TerraPower to develop small modular reactors (SMRs). Under the MOU, SK Inc, SK Innovation and TerraPower will jointly develop “next-generational technologies” needed for small modular reactors which operate at a capacity of 500 megawatts or less. The companies will also join forces to commercialise small nuclear generators by TerraPower in countries not limited to Korea.
Moohwan Kim, Executive Vice President and Head of Green Investment Centre at SK Inc noted: “SK is excited to expand our energy, technology and bioscience investments with leading companies in the US. We are committed to supporting TerraPower’s global deployment of game changing products. We see important synergies in our businesses and this investment reinforces our strategic global carbon reduction goals.”
Credit Suisse acted as the exclusive placement agent to TerraPower. Perkins Coie LLP acted as outside corporate counsel to TerraPower. TerraPower will continue to be a privately held company. Further terms of the fundraise were not disclosed.
Image: TerraPower founder Bill Gates with a mock-up of metal fuel pin bundles (photo courtesy of Gates Notes)