Engie strikes deal to sell 49% equity stake in US renewables portfolio

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Image: Engie.

French utility Engie has agreed to sell a minority 49% stake in a US-based renewables portfolio containing 500MW of utility-scale solar.

Engie revealed today that it had penned a deal to sell a 49% equity interest in a 2.3GW portfolio of projects to renewables investor Hannon Armstrong.

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The portfolio is yet to be fully commissioned, but upon completion Engie said it will represent a “major milestone” in the company’s target of commissioning 9GW of additional renewables by the end of next year.

Hannon Armstrong will take immediate ownership of a 49% stake in 663MW of commissioned wind projects, with the remaining 1.6GW of projects due to be transferred upon completion. This projects are described as remaining under construction.

The solar contingent of the portfolio comprises four specific projects. Engie has not identified the projects specifically, but has disclosed that the entire portfolio includes generators in key US markets such as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), PJM interconnection and the Southwest Power Pool.

Earlier this year the utility secured US$1.6 billion in tax equity commitments for the portfolio, described at the time as the largest ever in the US. Engie has indeed identified the US as one of its key growth markets amidst an expansion and reorganisation which, following former chief executive Isabelle Kocher’s ousting earlier this year, has been up in the air.

Hannon Armstrong invests in various clean energy-focused sectors, including both behind-the-meter and grid-connected renewables, as well as sustainable infrastructure. It lays claim to having 4,000 acres land and lease streams which underpin dozens of utility-scale projects with a combined capacity of nearly 700MW in its portfolio, while also having invested around US$120 million in C&I, community and residential solar systems to date.

“We have a shared mission to accelerate to the rapid adoption of climate change solutions, and we are pleased to partner with Engie once again to that end. This investment adds significant scale and diversity to our portfolio,” Jeffrey W. Eckel, chairman and CEO at Hannon Armstrong, said.

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