The fund managed by BNP Paribas Clean Energy Partners has acquired 100% of Gortahile Windfarm, which owns and operates a 20 megawatt wind farm in County Laois, from ABO Wind Ireland. The Gortahile Windfarm began commercial operation at the end of August 2010. It is forecast to produce about 70 GWh of electricity per year, enough to meet the annual needs of over 11,200 households.
“This acquisition represents the cornerstone of a larger portfolio that we intend to build in Ireland,” says Joost Bergsma, chief executive of the fund. “Ireland is a very attractive renewables market for financial investors because of its strong wind regime, its robust REFIT support policy, and its commitment to achieving its 2020 renewable energy target.”
As part of its geographically diversified investment portfolio, the team aims to acquire additional assets of wind generation capacity in Ireland over the course of its investment period. “We are securing a deep pipeline of projects with a number of developers and owners to enable us achieve our target investment size in Ireland,” says Francesco Cacciabue, chief financial officer and investment director. “We target both operational wind farms and wind farms under construction.”
The Gortahile Windfarm acquisition is the first in a partnership agreement between BNP Paribas Clean Energy Partners and ABO Wind in which the parties have agreed to transact 50 megawatts of generation capacity over the next 16 months.
German-based ABO Wind is one of Europe‘s most experienced wind energy developers. With interests in Germany, France, Spain, Ireland, United Kingdom, Bulgaria, Belgium and Argentina, the company has been successfully developing, constructing and maintaining commercial wind farms of 400 MW-rated capacity for almost 15 years. Currently 150 employees work for ABO Wind in these countries.
BNP Paribas Clean Energy Partners invests in construction and operational clean energy infrastructure assets in on-shore wind, solar photovoltaic biomass and small scale hydro power generation in Europe.