CHORUS Clean Energy has acquired a wind park portfolio in the Poitou-Charentes region in Western France near the Atlantic coast with a total capacity of 62.2 MW.
Watson Farley & Williams (WFW) advised Swiss energy trader Axpo Group on the sale by its subsidiary Volkswind GmbH of the wind park portfolio.
The wind park portfolio consists of four wind parks with eight V90 turbines and 14 V117 turbines from Vestas. Two of the wind parks were already connected to the grid in July 2015. These parks consist of the eight Vestas V90 turbines, which have a hub height of 105 meters. Over the course of August and September, the other two parks, which are nearly complete, will begin operations. These two parks have a total of 14 Vestas V117 turbines with a hub height of about 92 meters.
All four parks are slated to produce over 148,000 megawatt-hours of electricity starting with the first full year of operation.
CHORUS expects that the turbines will on average contribute about €15 million (US$16.58 million) to the company’s revenue annually during the term of the feed-in tariff. The total investment volume, including the debt component, for the wind parks amounts to about €120 million (US$132.64 million).
The purchase is still subject to the customary conditions precedent. The seller is the wind project developer Volkswind GmbH, a subsidiary of the Swiss energy group Axpo.
The funding system in France is similar to Germany’s and uses feed-in tariffs (FIT). These guarantee an inflation-adjusted price over a set period of time and also ensure that the generated electricity will be purchased at this price. The guaranteed feed-in tariff for the four wind parks starts at €85.20 per megawatt-hour fed-in and covers a period of 15 years. The tariff will be adjusted annually based on the combination of several French price indices.
Holger Götze, CEO of CHORUS Clean Energy AG stated:
“With our most recent purchase, we are significantly expanding our presence in France. France offers very attractive conditions for investments in wind parks. With this transaction, we have invested the proceeds from the capital increase relating to our IPO in the fall of 2015 to a large extent as planned in high-yield renewable energy plants. The remaining IPO proceeds are planned to be invested in the near future. With a total portfolio of currently 397 megawatts, we are among the leading independent operators of wind and solar parks in Germany.”
With this acquisition, the total capacity of the portfolio managed by CHORUS increases to roughly 400 MW. In terms of nominal capacity, wind energy now accounts for 61 percent of the CHORUS portfolio, of which 16 percent is located in France, 34 percent in Germany and 11 in other European countries.