Mainstream Renewable Power, a global wind and solar energy company, has announced it has been awarded contracts by the National Energy Commission of Chile to build and operate seven utility-scale wind energy plants with a total investment value of US$1.65 billion.
The projects, awarded via twenty year term contracts, are located throughout Chile and are scheduled to begin supplying low-cost, clean energy into the grid from January 2021.
Mainstream was one of the leading beneficiaries in what was the most competitive and biggest electricity tender in the country’s history. Eighty-four companies submitted 85,000 GWh of bids for just over 12,000 GWh of available power – nearly seven times more power bid than could be awarded. This round also marks the first time Mainstream has participated independently in a Chilean bid and all projects are 100% Mainstream owned.
Since entering the Chilean market in 2009, Mainstream has built up the most comprehensive portfolio of wind and solar energy projects among its peers in the country, extending to over 2,000 MW across more than 40 projects from Arica in the North to Puerto Montt in the South. Through its joint venture with Actis (Aela Energia), Mainstream also has an additional 300 MW of wind projects (which it won in the 2015 auction) due to start construction in Chile this year to deliver energy in 2017 as well as a 33 MW wind farm which has been in operation since 2014.
Commenting on the awards, Mainstream’s Chief Executive Eddie O’Connor said:
“Today’s win underpins Mainstream’s standing as the leading independent renewable energy company in high-growth emerging energy markets. We had the industry foresight to take early positions in Chile and South Africa and we are rolling-out similar plans across Africa, Central America and Asia. We look forward to developing these projects to the highest standard to deliver competitive priced energy into the Chilean system from 2021. I will be meeting with the CEOs of the main wind turbine manufacturers in the coming months to discuss the next generation of turbines required for these projects."
“In our young life as a company we have developed and won contracts for projects in the North Sea, Chile, South Africa, Egypt, Senegal, Ghana and the US. Our success is based on a set of values which marry entrepreneurial spirit with respect for local custom. Around the world, renewable energy is winning on price and on delivery. We continue to find innovative ways to fund our projects as we add to our exciting emerging markets project pipeline – just like the recently announced US$117.5 million equity funding for our African platform, which included investors such as the IFC and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.”