3i Infrastructure plc, a wholly-owned subsidiary of 3i Group plc, has signed an agreement to invest approximately €69 million (US$ 76 million) subject to completion adjustments, in Valorem. Headquartered in Bègles, France, Valorem is an independent renewable energy development and operating company.
3i Infrastructure will acquire a 28.5% interest in Valorem and provide further capital to the company through a subordinated debt instrument with the remaining equity being retained by the existing management team led by its founder Jean-Yves Grandidier, and minority shareholders.
Completion of the transaction is expected by early September.
Valorem is one of the largest wind developers in France, having developed over 480 MW of capacity over the last 10 years. Valorem benefits from a critical mass of operating assets and a strong pipeline of further projects at a well advanced development stage. Its operating assets generate predictable long term cash flows. The current Valorem portfolio has a stable production track record and is spread over the whole of France.
The French wind sector is attractive as it continues to benefit from significant growth, the French national plan forecasting total capacity of 19 GW in 2020 and 26 GW in 2023.
Richard Laing, Chairman, 3i Infrastructure plc, commented:
"We are pleased to be investing in Valorem, which fits our strategy of investing in low-risk energy platforms with strong growth potential backed by an experienced management team in order to achieve attractive returns for 3i Infrastructure’s shareholders."
Ben Loomes and Phil White, Managing Partners and Co-heads, Infrastructure, 3i Investments plc, added:
"With its experienced management team and development pipeline, Valorem is well positioned to benefit from the trend towards increased generation of renewable energy in France. We plan to support Valorem where we see attractive opportunities to build on this platform and we look forward to working with the management team to achieve this. We have been tracking this business and the French renewable energy sector for a number of years and this is a good example of our team securing an attractive investment on a bilateral basis, away from a competitive process."