US modular housing firm Plant Prefab secures $42m for expansion

The company’s portfolio includes these four luxury townhouses at an urban infill site in Los Gatos, California, designed by architect Metro Design Group and installed in just three days (Courtesy of Plant Prefab)
Modular housing company Plant Prefab has secured $42m in Series C and other funding to support expansion plans.

The latest round was led by the venture capital arm of Brazilian steel producer Gerdau, with additional investments by Asahi Kasei, Brown Angel Group, ICT Capital and Unreasonable Collective.

The round also included debt and equipment financing from Western Technology Investments and ATEL Capital Group. All are existing Plant Prefab investors.

Plant Prefab founder and chief executive Steve Glenn called it a vote of confidence in the company’s targeted market of multifamily and single-family developments.

He said the latest funding would let the company finish its solar-powered automated factory, the 270,000-sq-ft Tejon Ranch Hub in Arvin, California, billed as the first hybrid panel and module factory in the US.

The hub will be able to produce 800 housing units a year, operating faster and more cheaply than the company’s two existing factories in California, at Ontario and Rialto. The Rialto plant opened in 2016.

Plant Prefab says its patented building system overcomes difficulties caused by diverse local zoning and codes, skilled labour shortages, and short building seasons. It says the system lets developers and contractors design and build homes up to 50% faster than by conventional methods.

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