Allianz Global Investors has announced that the Allianz Renewable Energy Fund 2 (AREF2) has added three British solar parks to its portfolio. The three solar parks are located in Cambridgeshire, Worcestershire and Norfolk.
AREF2’s purchase of Mount Farm in the West Midlands was completed in December 2016. The closing of the two additional projects, Vine Farm and Rose & Crown, in the East of England took place on January 26, 2017. The total capacity of these additions to the portfolio amounts to 100 MWp, with the transaction led by Thomas G. Engelmann.
This UK solar portfolio is the third acquisition AllianzGI’s second closed-end renewable energy fund has made, following the purchase of wind farms in Germany and Sweden.
The three projects were financed through bank loans in the national currency from BayernLB. In 2014, BayWa r.e. had already sold two solar farms in France and Great Britain to funds managed by Allianz Global Investors. BayWa r.e. is still involved in the projects through technical and commercial operations management.
For Armin Sandhoevel, Chief Investment Officer (CIO) for Infrastructure Equity at Allianz Global Investors, solar energy in the UK is an ideal addition to the portfolio:
"Regardless of any upcoming changes to the political fabric, we firmly believe in the long-term attractiveness of the British solar market. The purchase of these three solar parks is a perfect way to regionally diversify the AREF2 portfolio.”
Matthias Taft, Board Member of BayWa AG, responsible for the energy business, comments:
“The framework conditions for renewable energy in Europe have been challenging over the past decade, and the market has seen increasing consolidation. I am therefore very pleased to announce our largest project business transaction to date with the sale of 100MWp. With new, innovative services and the development of new markets in Europe, America and Asia, we are well prepared for future developments in the energy sector.”
According to the latest statistics, the hours of sunshine in these regions of England are comparable with those in southern Germany. In the past year, long-term electricity purchase agreements were negotiated for all three solar projects. The seller BayWa r.e. renewable energy GmbH is mandated to manage the commercial and technical business operations.
The subscription period for AREF2 ended on November 15, 2016. The Fund’s €350 million (US$374 million) will chiefly be invested in European wind and solar parks on behalf of institutional investors. Once AREF2 is fully invested, the Infrastructure Equity team at Allianz Global Investors will manage around €1.6 billion (US$1.71 billion) in renewable energy and infrastructure projects.