Steelmaker Nucor committed to a $15 million private investment in public equity (PIPE) that will aid NuScale Power’s efforts to commercialize its small modular nuclear reactor technology.

The PIPE is targeted at the business combination between NuScale and Spring Valley Acquisition Corp., and increases the total PIPE commitment for the transaction to $236 million.

Nucor is one of the largest steel and steel products companies in North America. Based in Charlotte, North Carolina, Nucor has more than 300 operating facilities.

Nucor said in a statement that as a significant energy consumer, it is looking for “safe and reliable” sources of power generation that are consistent with its sustainability goals. It said that small modular reactor (SMR) development is “critical to ensure our nation has carbon-free, baseload power.” 

With the Nucor commitment, NuScale and Spring Valley have lined up $55 million in additional PIPE funding since announcing their business combination agreement in December. 

The $236 million in total PIPE proceeds, along with more than $232 million in a Spring Valley trust account, will be used to accelerate commercial deployment of NuScale’s SMR technology.

Earlier in April, Japan NuScale Innovation (JNI) and Japan Bank for International Corp. (JBIC) bought $110 million in NuScale Power equity from Fluor Corp. Fluor remains the majority owner of the Oregon-based SMR.

In 2021, NuScale received investments from Japanese companies, JGC Corporation (JGC) and IHI Corporation (IHI), which together formed JNI. With this latest announcement, JNI becomes the second-largest investor in NuScale Power and will hold approximately 8-9% of the company. Japan recently began discussions on a new clean energy strategy to reach net-zero by 2050, with development of nuclear technology seen as playing a key role.

In December, NuScale Power and Spring Valley Acquisition Corp. reached a merger agreement with an estimated enterprise value of $1.9 billion. Under the agreement, NuScale would receive up to $413 million of gross cash proceeds, including a $181 million private investment anchored by Samsung C&T Corp., DS Private Equity, Segra Capital Management and Pearl Energy. 

The recent transaction involving Nucor is expected to close in the second quarter. It is subject to approval by Spring Valley’s shareholders as well as other customary closing conditions.

Nucor said it has also supported the development of solar and wind energy projects through three Power Purchase Agreements it has entered into in the past two years. Those agreements are expected to help enable the construction of 600 MW of renewable power generation. 

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