June 9 (SeeNews) - Quercus Asset Selection is launching a new investment fund whose goal is to build a 300-MW portfolio of Italian wind farms in the next two years.
The Luxembourg-based infrastructure investor said Monday it aims at total investments of at least EUR 150 million (USD 170m). To gain access to the fund, international institutional investors will have to commit no less than EUR 10 million.
This is the third Quercus Renewable Energy Fund. It will target 20-MW-plus wind parks in Italy that have been operational for two to five years. Initially, the fund will be investing in plants in Central and Southern Italy, with an annual Internal Rate of Return (IRR) of 9%-11% expected over their lifetime. The fund will have an investment horizon of 15 years.
According to figures by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), Italy had 8.66 GW of operational onshore wind parks at the end of 2014.
Diego Biasi, co-founder of Quercus said that Italy’s wind market, the seventh largest globally, is highly fragmented. Some 50% of the existing wind capacity is controlled by small operators. “The Italian market is therefore about to enter a phase of consolidation which presents some very interesting opportunities for Quercus,” Biasi added.
The first Quercus Renewable Energy Fund was also focused on Italy. Launched in 2010, it built a portfolio of 80 MW of photovoltaic (PV) farms.