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Enel to sell $1.35bn worth stake in Mexican renewable assets

EBR Staff Writer Published 10 October 2017

Italian energy giant Enel will divest 80% stake in 1,712MW Mexican renewable portfolio for $1.35bn to La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and CKD Infraestructura México (CKD IM).

While CDPQ is a Canada-based institutional investor, CKD IM is a consortium of Mexican institutional investors that include Afore XXI Banorte, Afore Sura, Afore Banamex, Pensionissste and Fonadin.

The renewable assets planned to be sold include five wind farms and three solar projects, of which 1,283MW capacity is under construction while the remaining 429MW is in operation.

CKD IM general manager Eduardo Ramos said: “This acquisition marks an important step in the partnership between CKD IM and CDPQ, which will now have a well-diversified investment platform across growing sectors such as renewable energy and transportation.

“Enel is a world-class company with a strong footprint in Mexico, and its expertise in project development, construction and operation makes it a strategic partner for us.”

Five wind farms are 198MW Amistad, 200MW Dominica, 129MW Palo Alto, 93MW Salitrillos and 100MW Vientos del Altiplano.

The solar projects that are part of the deal are 427MW Villanueva I, 327MW Villanueva III and 238MW Don José.

Enel will retain the remaining 20% stake in the portfolio and will remain as the operator of the plants spread across six Mexican states.

The energy firm is carrying out the transaction through its subsidiary Enel Green Power (EGP) using the Build, Sell and Operate (BSO) model as part of its strategic plan for 2017-2019.

It expects the transaction to bring down its consolidated net debt by nearly $1.9bn.

Enel Green Power head Antonio Cammisecra said: “The new model represents an opportunity for partners willing to invest in a large and diversified portfolio of projects in strategic areas, supported by long-term power purchase agreements, with the plants developed, built and operated by Enel Green Power.

“This strategy enables us to further exploit our global pipeline of solar and wind projects whereby gain access to additional resources, accelerating our growth. By attracting solid long-term partners in this transaction, EGP confirms the strategic role that Mexico plays in its global presence.”

Subject to regulatory approvals from the Mexican antitrust authorities, the transaction is anticipated to be closed by the year end.

Image: The 198MW Amistad wind farm in Northern Mexico. Photo: courtesy of Enel Spa.