August 2 (Renewables Now) - French renewable energy firm Neoen said Thursday it has bought 53.4 MW of wind farms in Ireland for an enterprise value of around EUR 46 million (USD 51m).
The company is paying EUR 25.8 million in cash to the previous owners of the eight wind parks -- the Irish Infrastructure Fund, co-managed by AMP Capital and Irish Life Investment Managers, and minority shareholder Energia Group.
The oldest wind farms in the portfolio have been in operation since 1998, while the newest have been put online in 2012. All of them are selling their output under long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs). The turbines have been built at locations offering very attractive wind resources, Neoen said, and noted that there is significant repowering potential.
The company is preparing to negotiate new commercial arrangements when the existing PPAs expire.
These are the first operational assets of Neoen in Ireland. Chairman and CEO Xavier Barbaro said these will serve as a strategic base for the company’s future expansion in the country.
The contribution to earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) from the newly acquired parks will be insignificant in 2019, so Neoen will keep its annual guidance unchanged. From 2020 the Irish wind farms will be fetching about EUR 5 million of annual EBITDA before any optimisation or repowering investments.
(EUR 1 = USD 1.11)