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Renewable Energy M&A: Greencoat Renewables acquires 22.5% stake in 288 MW Butendiek offshore wind farm in German North Sea

image credit: Enerdatics
Mohit Kaul's picture
Founder, Enerdatics

Building Enerdatics. Leadership experience in a high growth SaaS company and secured a successful exit. A natural leader who cares about creating value for all stakeholders. Extensive experience...

  • Member since 2022
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  • Jan 4, 2023

Greencoat acquired the wind farm from Marguerite Pantheon, a fund owned and managed by global investment companies Marguerite and Pantheon, which assumed ownership of the asset in Nov '17. The wind farm is located in Germany's exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and has been operational since 2015, selling power under a fixed-price feed-in-tariff until Dec’23.  After this period, the project benefits from a floor price for the electricity sold until Dec '35, providing potential for additional upside from Europe’s growing corporate power purchase agreement (PPA) market. The transaction is expected to close in Q1 2023.

The €1.3bn wind farm was developed by German offshore wind veteran wpd, which was rebranded as Skyborn Renewables earlier this year following a takeover by private equity (PE) firm Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP). The project reached financing close in Sep '13 following agreements for both debt and equity financing. Debt financing was provided by a consortium including KfW, UniCredit, European Investment Bank, BayernLB, Nordbank, and RaboBank, with wpd contributing part of the equity itself. 

Greencoat Renewables is one of the most active PE investors in Europe, with a portfolio of ~30 operational wind farms located in Ireland, France, Germany, Spain, and Sweden, representing a total capacity of ~1.1 GW. As per Enerdatics’ research, the company follows a strategy of acquiring operating assets backed by stable, contracted, long-term cash flows. The company has invested more than €660mn across Europe during 2022 (not accounting for the Butendiek deal), and expanded its geographical footprint to Germany earlier this year, through the acquisition of a 50% stake in the operational, 277 MW Borkum Riffgrund 1 offshore wind farm. The project also benefits from a FiT contract similar to the one linked to the Butendiek project, with a fixed price until Sept '24 and a floor price until May’35. The company seeks to leverage the rising need of corporates and utilities to contract power under medium-/long-term PPAs, specifically to power tech companies’ data centers and is also building co-located battery storage facilities to enhance project returns.

The above analysis is proprietary to Enerdatics’ energy analytics team, based on the current understanding of the available data. The information is subject to change and should not be taken to constitute professional advice or a recommendation.

Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Jan 4, 2023

How often is it the goal early on for the builders of these assets to have them ultimately be acquired? Is it like a startup company where that's regularly seen as one of the end goals? 

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