Saudi Arabian industrial giant Tasnee says it has completed due diligence on a further $16 million strategic investment in Australia’s Dyesol, one of the world’s leading developer of dye solar cell technologies that can applied on buildings and rooftops to generate electricity.
An original investment of $4 million from Tasnee was announced in February. According to the Chairman Richard Caldwell the then $4 million investment could increase up to $20 million within 18 months, subject to due diligence.
Dyesol on Monday said it had extended the exercise date by two months, but would seek a report from an independent expert on the assumption that the investment would go ahead. As the investment from Tasnee will exceed 20 per cent ownership in the company it will require shareholder approval at a general meeting.
Tasnee, or the National Industrialization Company of Saudi Arabia, is the second largest industrial company in Saudi Arabia, and the second largest producer of titanium oxide in the world. It also owns several titanium mines in Australia.
Dyesol technology creates “artificial photosynthesis” using a layer of nano-titania on glass, metal or polymer. The light that hits the layer excited electrons, which is absorbed by titania and converted into an electric current.
Dyesol has recently proven the efficiency of their dye-sensitized solar cells to be 15 per cent, beating the world record of 14.1 per cent, and competing on the same level as conventional solar cells, even with low light.
Dyesol’s technology, when compared with conventional silicon based PV technology, costs less to manufacture and produces electricity more efficiently even in low light conditions and can be directly integrated into conventional glass panelled buildings.
The company hopes that the investment will help to commercialise Dyesol’s dye-sensitized solar cell technology as well as developing future plans for accelerated commercialisation of its Building Integrated PV technology.
Dyesol shares, which were trading at less than 10c before the original Tasnee investment, on Monday jumped another 10 per cent to 42.5c, giving the company a market capitalisation of around $95 million.