Ardian-backed TRE Solar acquires biomass project in Italy

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Ardian-backed TRE Solar acquires biomass project in Italy

Ardian, ex AXA Private Equity, and Tozzi Group, the industrial company active in renewable energies, full owners of the joint venture TRE Solar, today announced the completion of TRE Solar’s acquisition of biomass power plant project Agritre.

Ardian, through its Infrastructure activity, and Tozzi Group, through its subsidiary TRE Tozzi Renewable Energy, started to work together back in 2007 in order to invest in renewable forms of energy. The first projects focused on wind farms (Daunia Serracapriola and Daunia Calvello). The cooperation evolved in 2009 with the creation of TRE&Partners joint venture focusing on wind farms and hydroelectric power plants. TRE Solar, the latest joint venture vehicle, was created in 2011 with Ardian holding a 65% stake and Tozzi Group owning 35%.

Ardian and Tozzi Group will invest over €100 million in Agritre to allow the company to build a 25.2MW capacity greenfield biomass power plant in Southern Italy. All relevant authorizations have been obtained and the project is set to be completed in April 2016. The plant will burn residue from cereal cultivation and olive and vine pruning to provide a low-emission alternative for the disposal of agricultural waste material. The construction of the project will involve around 200 people and the site itself will provide employment for at least 30 employees once operational.

With more than 450MW in operation in onshore wind farms, hydroelectric projects, solar farms and now biomass projects, the TRE&Partners and TRE Solar partnerships put Ardian and Tozzi Group among the leading owners and operators of renewable energy assets in Italy.

Mathias Burghardt, Head of the Infrastructure team at Ardian, said:

“This new investment of our third generation of Infrastructure funds illustrates our strategy of long-term partnership with industrial players. This approach gives us a privileged access to fully developed projects with regulated revenues profiles. Our close relationship with the Tozzi Group has enabled Ardian Infrastructure to become one of the largest renewable energy platforms in Europe.”

Franco Tozzi, Chairman of Tozzi Group, added:

“We are delighted to support Italy’s first biomass power plant project of this kind. It is an innovative system that will help to decrease CO2 emissions and bring long-lasting economic development to the Puglia region. We have worked successfully with Ardian over the last few years – they perfectly understand our long-term industrial aims.”

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