Aquila Capital has completed the acquisition of Norsk Grønnkraft AS, an operator of 33 small-scale hydropower facilities located in central and southern Norway, from owners Akershus Energi, Energiselskapet Buskerud, E-CO Energi and Østfold Energi.
Norsk Grønnkraft owns and operates a regionally diversified portfolio of 33 small-scale hydropower plants, generating c. 210 GWh per year. The average age of the facilities is eight years. Through a bilateral agreement with NGK Construction, Norsk Grønnkraft’s former sister company, Aquila Capital is looking to add further generating facilities to the Norwegian hydropower platform.
The transaction expands Aquila Capital’s position in Norway’s blue-green hydropower battery network, which is emerging as a potential key element in the success of the massive investment being made in on- and offshore wind power around the Baltic and North Seas. Norway is also reportedly close to agreeing to construct a 700 km underwater power line that would allow the UK to import hydroelectric power from the country’s grid. The development of the world’s largest subsea interconnector could be in operation by 2020.
Oldrik Verloop, Co-Head of Hydropower at Aquila Capital said:
“This is one of the largest acquisitions of a small-scale Norwegian operator and shows how Aquila Capital has established a hydropower platform of scale in Norway since the first investment there in 2011. We aim to increase our production volume in Norway during the next five years to over 1,000 GWh.”
It is the third investment in Norwegian hydropower by Aquila Capital. It follows the July 2014 acquisition of a 33% stake in Tinfos AS, an operator of two large-scale and nine small-scale run-of-river hydropower facilities, by a partnership between Aquila Capital and APG, the investment manager that acts for ABP.
Aquila Capital’s Oldrik Verloop concluded:
“Aquila Capital clients currently have a share in more than 50 hydropower generating facilities in Norway and Turkey. We are actively looking at further opportunities across Europe and expect to be making more investments in the course of 2015.”