SJF Ventures has a shine for solar energy panel installer

SJF Ventures announced today that it backed groSolar, a vermont-based installer of solar energy systems in new and existing homes. The company, which aims to launch a national marketing campaign, raised $2.25 million from SJF Ventures, Calvert Social Investment Fund and the Allco Financial Group, all of which specialize in cleantech investments.

The company, which is a subsidiary of GRO, provides homes and businesses which such energy systems as solar electricity, solar hot water and solar air heating. “Our name symbolizes the mission of our company, to grow the utilization of solar energy in new and innovative ways,” says CEO Jeff Wolfe.

The company’s venture round comes at a time when more and more cleantech companies are raising capial. More than $1.4 billion in venture capital has been invested in North American cleantech companies during the first six months of 2006, according to Cleantech Venture Network. The clean energy segment was particularly strong, pulling in 70% of all cleantech VC funding for the second quarter. A large portion of this was invested in early stage solar technology firms.

“We believe there is a significant investment opportunity in the deployment of both proven and emerging solar technologies,” said SJF Ventures Managing Director David Kirkpatrick. “The groSolar executive and product development team has the vision, expertise and technology partnerships to execute on this opportunity.”