IEnova to buy newly-completed Ventika wind farms in Mexico

Infraestructura Energética Nova S.A.B. de C.V. (IEnova) announced Sept. 5 that it has entered, through one of its subsidiaries, into a Purchase and Sale Agreement (PSA) for 100% of the equity interests in the Ventika I and Ventika II wind facilities in Mexico, which are majority-owned by Blackstone Energy Partners and affiliated private equity funds, and Fisterra Energy, a company owned by funds managed by Blackstone, along with certain minority shareholders.

“This transaction will enhance IEnova’s renewables portfolio,” said Carlos Ruiz Sacristán, Chairman and CEO of IEnova. “It is also consistent with IEnova’s strategic plan to focus on short and medium-term growth and reflects IEnova’s commitment to exercise investment discipline by investing in assets which have long-term, US dollar-denominated contracts with creditworthy counterparties. We anticipate that, upon closing, this transaction will contribute significantly and immediately to IEnova´s earnings.”

Ventika is a 252-MW wind facility powered by 84 turbines, making it the largest wind farm in Mexico and one of the largest wind farms in Latin America. The facility is made up of two adjacent wind farms located in the General Bravo municipality in the state of Nuevo Leon, and was jointly developed by Fisterra Energy and Cemex, a global building materials company. Construction was completed in December 2015 and commercial operations commenced in April 2016. Cemex will remain as asset manager of the project.

The purchase price for this transaction is estimated to be US$852 million, comprised of an estimated cash payment at closing of US$375 million, plus the assumption of outstanding debt of approximately US$477 million. Ventika has long-term project financing in place, granted by commercial and development banks. The purchase price is also subject to customary post-closing adjustments. Ventika’s electric generation and capacity are contracted through long-term, U.S. dollar denominated, Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) with non-government, high credit rating offtakers.

“We are extremely proud of Blackstone’s involvement, alongside Fisterra and our partners, in developing and constructing Mexico’s largest wind farm in support of Mexico’s renewable energy goals,” said Sean Klimczak, Senior Managing Director, Blackstone. “This transformative project, which has helped reduce Mexico’s CO2 emissions and reliance on oil-fired generation, is emblematic of the types of projects we endeavor to develop around the world.”

“It has been a privilege to co-develop and to construct such a marquee Mexican renewable project with Cemex, a world class and experienced partner,” said Pedro Barriuso, Fisterra’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We look forward to continuing to be active in the Mexican power generation sector as the country continues to support private investment through its ongoing energy reform.”

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2016 and is subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including the receipt of required regulatory and corporate approvals. These required approvals include those from IEnova’s shareholders and Mexico’s Federal Antitrust Commission (COFECE).

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.