Business Irish

Monday 27 January 2020

Irish renewable energy firm secures €349m in project finance for two wind farms in Chile

Projects expected to provide power to the equivalent of 460,000 households
Projects expected to provide power to the equivalent of 460,000 households

Louise Kelly

An Irish renewable energy generation business has received $410m (€349m) in funding for two wind farms in Chile.

Aela Energia, formed in June 2013, is a joint venture, 60pc owned by Actis and Mainstream owning the remaining 40pc.

The financing will allow the firm to begin the 170MW Sarco ( in the Atacama region) and 129MW Aurora (in Los Lagos region) projects.

Developed by Mainstream, the two projects will use wind turbines supplied by German manufacturer Senvion, and will be completed in the second half of 2018.

It is understood that the combined efforts of the two projects will provide power to the equivalent of 460,000 households.

Read more: Inside Mainstream: focus on asset sales and expansion

"These projects were awarded through a competitive tendering process in which wind energy prices came in below fossil fuel prices, clearly demonstrating that renewable energy is cheaper than fossil fuel generation," Bart Doyle, General Manager of Mainstream Chile, said:

"Last year Mainstream was exclusively awarded further supply contracts equivalent to almost 1GW of wind capacity in Chile, representing a 30pc share of the auction, which further underpins our commitment to Chile and positions us as the leading independent renewable energy company focused on high-growth emerging markets."

The financing will be provided by a group of multilateral and commercial banks including Inter-American Development Bank and its member affiliate Inter-American Investment Corporation (IADB-IIC), Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Korean Development Bank, Caixa, and KfW and Banco Santander as VAT lender.

Aela Energia was created initially to deliver a pipeline of over 600MW of wind and solar projects into Chilean construction and operation. 

Founded in 2008 by Dr Eddie O'Connor, Mainstream has raised more than €1.3bn in project finance to date and employs 160 staff across five continents

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