Semprius, a Durham semiconductor startup that is building a solar panel manufacturing facility in Henderson, announced Thursday that it has raised $3 million in additional funding from a group of investors that includes Chapel Hill-based Morgan Creek Capital Management.
The private company has already raised more than $30 million in venture funding, including a $20 million round that closed in July. Corporate giant Siemens, a leading builder of solar farms, acquired a 16 percent stake in the company in June.
Other investors in this latest round include the Illinois Emerging Technologies Fund and In-Q-Tel, an investment firm affiliated with the CIA.
Semprius also announced Thursday that Gregory Wolf, president of Duke Energy Renewables, has joined the company's board of directors.
Semprius employs 38 people in Research Triangle Park.
The company uses a patented a process, called micro-transfer printing, which allows a solar cell to be lifted off the substrate on which it was grown.
The substrate can then be reused multiple times to grow additional semiconductors, which Semprius says will allow it to reduce its manufacturing costs to half that of its competitors.
The company is eligible to receive nearly $18.3 million in state and local governments incentives if it meets hiring and investment goals at the facility near Henderson.
Semprius expects to create 256 jobs there over the next five years. Those jobs - in engineering, operations and maintenance - will pay an average annual salary of $45,565, well above the typical wage in Vance County.
Semprius CEO Joe Carr said this morning that the company is on schedule to begin moving in to the facility on March 1. Production of the modules is expected to begin July 1.