The Weekly Data Review

Santander exits Cubico after year of acquisitions


  • 23 Project Finance deals worth $1.5b
  • 19 M&A deals worth $109m
  • 9 Venture Capital Private Equity deals worth $17m

 

Last Friday saw Banco Santander SA sell its stake in renewable energy investment firm Cubico Sustainable Investment to its pension fund partners Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and Public Sector Investment Board.

The two funds will now own Cubico on a 50:50 basis following the undisclosed deal. CEO Marco Sebares said the joint acquisition is “an important endorsement of our strategy and capabilities”.

Since being formed just over a year ago, the platform has accumulated 1.62 GW of wind, solar and water assets across a range of countries from the UK and Ireland to Spain, Portugal and Brazil. However, 1.2 GW of this capacity was previously owned by Santander.

A turbulent 14 months

Santander will view its time with Cubico as a mixed one over the last 14 months. It quickly provided the project finance for a 17.5 MW wind farm in Italy just a month after its formation. It then experienced a quieter few months before announcing one of its largest deals, a $496 million investment for 392 MW of wind farms in Brazil. The deal made Cubico the third largest wind farm owner in the country.

Ricardo Diaz, Managing Director and Head of Americas at Cubico, subsequently told Clean Energy Pipeline that it would be targeting up to 400 MW of further assets in LatAm during 2016, although no deals have yet materialised. Diaz also said that it would be targeting 800 MW in auctions in Mexico, although the company was not named among the winners in the country’s inaugural auction earlier this year.

The firm suffered a further setback recently when it was revealed it had been shortlisted alongside investment manager I Squared Capital for the acquisition of Spanish developer T-Solar from Isolux. However, Isolux soon entered into exclusive talks with I Squared for the solar firm, with a deal expected to be confirmed imminently.

The firm will now continue to focus on what it described on Friday as its “flexible investment and acquisition approach”. Its most recent deals have focused on the acquisition and refinancing of clean energy assets in the UK totalling 162.1 MW.

Also last week…

The US secondary market deal flow continued into the summer, the most significant of acquisitions being Sempra’s buy of the 100 MW Apple Blossom wind farm in Michigan from Geronimo Energy. Meanwhile, Canadian firm Alterra Power struck a deal to acquire a 20 MW solar portfolio in the Midwestern US.

There was also significant activity in Central Europe. German wind developer Prokon eG closed financing on the 48 MW Gagel wind farm in Germany, with Eur70 million debt financing from HSH Nordbank. German investment manager KGAL also acquired a 12.3 MW wind farm in France from ABO while Nordex sold a 12.5 MW project, also in France.

In the green bond market, Australia’s Victoria state government announced the issuance of a A$300 million ($225 million) bond, the first from an Australian government. The bond will be used for a range of energy efficiency projects and the development of a large-scale renewable energy power station.

Last week, Clean Energy Pipeline tracked 23 project finance deals worth $1.5 billion, 19 M&A deals including four disclosed deals totalling $109 million, and nine venture capital private equity deals amounting to $17 million.

Clean Energy Pipeline subscribers can view these deals in the Transactions section of www.cleanenergypipeline.com

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