Foresight Solar Fund Ltd (LON:FSFL), a fund investing in a diversified portfolio of ground-based solar PV assets in the UK and internationally, has announced the acquisition of a portfolio of three greenfield solar assets in Spain.
The 98.5 MW portfolio is comprised of three subsidy-free greenfield assets located in the Andalusia region, Spain. Total expected transaction costs are expected to amount to €72 million once construction is completed and include the acquisition of development rights for approximately €15 million. Construction is expected to start in summer 2021, with operations targeted to start in June 2022. The acquisition follows Foresight Solar’s acquisition of the 26.1 MW Virgen del Carmen asset in Huelva, Spain in September 2020, its first acquisition in the territory.
The acquisition of the development rights for the assets in Andalusia has been funded using the Company’s revolving credit facilities. It is the Company’s current intention to introduce a conservative level of project finance at portfolio level to partially fund construction milestones, with the remaining funding being provided by the Company’s existing revolving credit facilities. The Company’s total gearing and long-term gearing as a percentage of gross asset value will remain within the investment policy limits following the acquisition.
It is anticipated that a long-term Power Purchase Agreement will shortly be signed with a major European energy supplier, securing an attractive level of contracted revenues. The Company will implement a 10-year rolling EUR/GBP foreign currency hedging strategy covering the future cash flows generated by the asset to substantially eliminate currency fluctuation exposure on returns.
The Company has been able to leverage the significant regional expertise of its investment manager, Foresight Group, which, through its offices located in Madrid, will be managing a portfolio of more than 200MW of subsidy-free renewable assets in Spain when including the Andalusia portfolio.
Following the acquisition, the Company’s portfolio comprises 58 assets, based in the UK, Australia and Spain, with an installed capacity of 994 MW once fully operational. The Company’s investments outside the UK will represent approximately 17% of the gross asset value of the Company and its subsidiaries.
Commenting on the acquisition, Alex Ohlsson, Chairman of Foresight Solar, said:
“This acquisition builds on the Company’s recent first investment in Spain and represents a meaningful step forward for the Company’s international diversification and its increased presence in the subsidy-free solar market. The ability of the Investment Manager to secure such an attractive investment opportunity for Foresight Solar once again demonstrates the benefit of its significant regional presence across Europe. We look forward to updating investors on progress on the Spanish portfolio as major milestones are met in the coming year.”