December 20 (Renewables Now) - A consortium led by French utility Engie SA (EPA:ENGI) is to acquire the Portuguese hydropower portfolio of Energias de Portugal SA (ELI:EDP), with a total capacity of 1.7 GW, for EUR 2.2 billion (USD 2.4bn).
The consortium also includes Credit Agricole Assurances, the insurance arm of French bank Credit Agricole SA (EPA:ACA), with a 35% stake, and French investment manager Mirova, which owns 25%. Together they submitted the winning bid in an auction held by the Portuguese utility, it was announced on Thursday.
Engie will be responsible for operating and maintaining the hydropower plants (HPP) in the portfolio, while also providing energy management services, according to the company's statement. The company expects a net debt impact of about EUR 650 million from the deal, which is expected to close in the second half of 2020.
The assets in the portfolio have a weighted average remaining concession term of 45 years and include three new pump storage units as well as three recently repowered run-of-river plants.
Engie expects the pump storage hydro production to become more valuable in the medium to long term considering the inherent intermittency of wind and solar assets, the company stated.
(EUR 1.0 = USD 1.1)