AIIM, Nedbank to co-fund 40MW C&I pipeline in Southern Africa

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
(Image credit: Sola Group)

Commercial and industrial (C&I) solar is set for a boost in South Africa, with financial support now lined up for a new pipeline.

Developer Sola Group said this week it has teamed up with Nedbank and African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM) to deploy a 40MW portfolio for industrial customers.

The so-called Orionis fund will mobilise ZAR400 million (around US$26 million) for projects set to be backed via power purchase agreements (PPAs), Sola Group said in a statement.

The firm explained a 15MW PPA pipeline has already signed under Orionis, with offtakers including breweries and other South African industrial players.

“This partnership brings together three highly experienced entities whose combined skills offer consumers clean energy solutions at a time when our country desperately needs it,” said Chris Haw, chairperson of the Sola Group.

The current Sola Group includes an Assets division, which launched in 2008 as Aurora Power Solutions and has since developed a 305MW-plus PV portfolio across Africa.

The broader group also comprises a more recent EPC unit – Sola Build, founded in 2013 – that has so far built a 30MW-plus batch of embedded generation solar, chiefly for private sector firms.

The group claims to have designed and built 37.5MW worth of C&I solar projects, coupled with a 1.6MWh portfolio of energy storage systems.

Sola Group, which also has an O&M service provision, directly employs 50 full-time staff in South Africa and estimates the new 40MW pipeline will create a further 880 jobs in the future.

Signing PPAs under Orionis will bring industrial customers 20% lower tariffs compared to the rates they would face under deals with state utility Eskom or municipal providers, Sola Group claimed.

Another advantage, the firm added, is that Orionis’s aggregation of all project phases – finance, design, construction and operation – means finance will be cheaper than under individual arrangements.

The bid to offer solar at cheaper rates than Eskom sees the light months after financial woes at the state utility drove South Africa’s government to considering a re-opening of old renewable PPAs, prompting concern from renewable associations.

Read Next

PV Tech Premium
April 20, 2021
New technologies are increasingly being used to enhance solar project economics and boost gains, however the application and modelling of these technologies remains uncertain. This exclusive recording from Solar Finance & Investment Europe sheds a light on those areas.
April 16, 2021
There was a more than fourfold increase in corporate solar funding in Q1 2021 compared with the same quarter last year, amid strong demand for PV assets globally, according to new analysis by Mercom Capital.
April 14, 2021
Independent energy trader BB Energy (BBE) has set its sights on Africa’s solar and storage market by acquiring Solarcentury’s Africa-facing division for an undisclosed sum.
April 6, 2021
Indian solar power producer Azure Power has sold its rooftop solar business to Radiance Renewables as the company aims to focus more on projects with higher returns.
PV Tech Premium
March 31, 2021
As the solar industry continues to mature and adopt more merchant-led business models, how will asset management principles need to adapt? This exclusive recording of a panel discussion from our Solar Finance & Investment Europe event answered that very question.
March 23, 2021
Scatec has unveiled a NOK 100 billion (US$11.7 billion) plan that will see the company expand its renewables portfolio to 15GW over the next four years.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
April 20, 2021
Upcoming Webinars
April 28, 2021
4:00 - 4:30 PM CET
Solar Media Events
May 11, 2021