After nearly four years, Indian wind energy developer Continuum Wind Energy is back on the acquisition radar of international power companies.
According to Indian economic daily Mint European power majors Shell and Statkraft are looking to acquire Continuum Wind Energy. Additionally CLP India, a subsidiary of China’s CLP Group, is also reported to be interested in the deal.
Continuum has an operational wind energy capacity of 700 megawatts and another 1.7 gigawatts at various stages of development. The entire operational capacity is either under feed-in tariff regime or corporate or captive agreements. The same is the case with a very large majority of the under-development capacity. Continuum has successfully participated in three of the 12 wind energy auctions held in India so far. The company secured 450 megawatts of capacity in these three auctions.
At present, Continuum’s majority stakeholder is Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners, which invested $212 million in 2012 in the company, and has been looking for buyers for the company for some time now. It came very close four years ago when SunEdison agreed to acquire the company in what would have been the largest renewable energy deal in India till that time. With the downfall of SunEdison, the deal also fell through.
Shell has minor investments in India’s renewable energy sector. In 2018, Shell Technology Ventures invested $20 million in Husk Power Systems, a leading name mini grid operations in India and Africa. Earlier this year a Shell subsidiary also acquired a 49% stake in Cleantech Solar, a company that works with companies to set up captive solar power systems.
Norway’s Statkraft, while active in India since 2004, has no notable renewable energy assets in the country. The company owns a few large-scale hydro power projects.
CLP India is by far the most experienced in terms of exposure to renewable energy projects in India. Apart from thermal power projects, the company has 1 gigawatt of wind and solar power assets. Earlier this year, the company acquired two utility-scale solar power projects from Suzlon Energy.
Over the last few months several foreign and Indian investors have expressed interest in buying renewable energy companies and assets in India.
ExxonMobil is reported to have been working with an Indian public sector company to set up a renewable energy partnership. Singapore’s state investment firm Temasek and Swedish private-equity firm EQT Partners are reportedly planning a $500 million investment in a new renewable energy company. Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management is believed to have shown interest in the 1.6 gigawatt solar and wind portfolio of Mytrah Energy.