Hg deals mark €1bn in renewable AUM

The purchase of two Spanish solar projects and an onshore UK wind project have boosted the firm's renewable energy assets by €300m.

HgCapital Renewable Power Partners has acquired three assets for a combined debt and equity total of €300 million, taking its portfolio’s gross capital value past the €1 billion mark.

The London-based firm has partnered with low carbon-focused UK energy company Peel Energy, making the two firms equal partners in owning and operating England’s largest onshore wind farm, Scout Moor. The 65-megawatt facility operates near Manchester and produces electricity for 40,000 homes.

HG has separately teamed with Spanish firm Plenium Partners on the purchase of a 12-megawatt project in Castilla La Mancha, in central Spain, developed by Naturener’; and an eight megawatt project in Murcia, in the south-east of the country, developed by GA Solar. The latter is expected to be operational in April 2010. All acquisitions benefit from long-term, project finance debt, HgCapital said in a statement.

HgCapital said 2009 was the most active year for its renewable fund since it closed at €300 million in late 2006. The fund’s transactions last year reached €600 million in debt and equity. “Before the downturn, we held our fire instead of rushing in at unsustainable valuations or taking on second-tier assets,” Tom Murley, the head of HgCapital’s renewable team, said in a statement.

The private equity outfit’s renewable fund owns 19 projects focusing on onshore wind in the UK, Spanish solar assets and Swedish wind. Additionally, HgCapital owns two French wind farms, one Irish wind farm and four German biomass plants. The portfolio has a 325-megawatt capacity and a large development pipeline, HgCapital said.