23 April 2020
The Amarenco Group achieved the first step of its fundraising, with the objective of raising €50 millions by the end of 2020. IDIA Capital Investissement, with three other private equity companies of the Crédit Agricole group (Sofilaro Gestion, Grand Sud-Ouest Capital and Nord-Midi Pyrénées Développement) took a €15 millions stake in Amarenco. In addition, the Group plans to set up a €100 million equity line to finance its external growth plan.
With this full capital deployment, IDIA Capital Investissement – via its Crédit Agricole Transitions fund dedicated to energy, agriculture and agrifood transitions, – becomes the first institutional shareholder of the Amarenco group.
Amarenco Group was created in 2013 by an Irish-French team of energy industry leaders who shared a common vision: solar will one day dominate the global power generation mix, not only as a peak load power source but also as baseload thanks to energy storage technologies. In fact, Amarenco won 90 MWh – the largest storage project in Europe – in the latest French call for tenders for long-term storage.1
From its global headquarter in Cork, Ireland, and its operational headquarter in South-West of France, Amarenco is today accelerating the deployment of its international activities, particularly in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific. With offices and local teams located in Muscat (Oman) and Singapore, the Group has built up a pipeline of projects under development and acquisition in excess of 2.5 GW.
The fundraising will contribute to financing both the group’s international expansion and the consolidation of its leading position in European markets, particularly in France and Ireland. In addition to its organic growth strategy focused on the agricultural, industrial and governmental segments, Amarenco will be able to strengthen its inorganic strategy focused on greenfield and brownfield asset aggregation as well as corporate M&A activities in all regions where the company operates.
Concurrently with this transaction, Amarenco also completed a strategic transaction: the purchase of Macquarie Capital’s shares in their Joint Venture holding a portfolio of solar projects, under development in Ireland. The group thus becomes a 100% shareholder in this portfolio of projects, part of which will be submitted to the next calls for tenders expected around the summer in Ireland. Amarenco is also in the process of finalizing the acquisition of an independent solar power producer located in the South-East of France and aims at integrating many more of such corporate platforms.
The company currently employs more than 130 people worldwide and plans to recruit around 20 additional employees by the end of the year, particularly in the field of project development, project management, M&A and project financing.
Alain Desvigne, Amarenco Group CEO, states: “The health battle we are waging makes us realize that we are actually never prepared for the worst and we always find ourselves completely distraught at the last moment. The climate war, which consists of preserving the life of all species on earth, cannot wait. It is absolutely vital that institutional capital continues to flow significantly to finance it. The weapons chosen by Amarenco and the Crédit Agricole Group are solutions to decarbonize the global economy by investing in both energy and agricultural transition. The entire Amarenco Group joins me in celebrating this important first step, in particular my co-founders John Mullins, Olivier Carré and Nick Howard, our historic financial shareholders and our employees, who have all contributed to the success of this strategic transaction. Finally, the current members of the Amarenco Group’s board, namely Fiona O’Driscoll, James Murphy, my co-founders and myself, are all very pleased to welcome Maud Minoustchin as a new member of our board “.
For Maud Minoustchin, Director of Energy Transition Investments at IDIA Capital Investissement: “The Amarenco Group’s growth strategy of moving from a developer model to an independent producer model fits perfectly with the investment philosophy of the CA Transitions fund. Furthermore, CA Transitions is innovating by launching the very first responsible convertible bonds whose return is directly indexed to the company’s achievement of three environmental, health and social objectives: the promotion of agri-solar, the removal of asbestos from agricultural roofs, and the involvement of civic crowdfunding in project funding. We are particularly proud of this partnership with Amarenco which thus promotes a more responsible finance for the ecological transition of territories”.
The players for the transaction are as follows:
Crédit Agricole group:
- IDIA Capital Investissement : Maud Minoustchin, Guillaume Boccamaiello, Jean Lebreton
- Sofilaro Gestion : Benjamin Bessac
- Grand Sud-ouest Capital : Christophe Oré
- Nord-Midi Pyrénées : Frédéric Sajas
- Financial advice : Eight Advisory (Lionnel Gérard, Guillaume Catoire), Green Cape Finance (Geoffroy de Clisson)
- Tax advice: Eight Advisory (Guillaume Rembry, Guillaume Exerjean)
- Legal advice : Gide Loyrette Nouel (Alexis Pailleret, Chloé Bouhours, Alexandre Bochu, Pascal Suffran, Maxime Redon, Caroline Pineau, Emma George), Arthur Cox (John Matson, Michael Coyle, Niamh O’Toole, Sinéad McDonagh et Lyndsey McGinn)
- Financial advice: Finergreen (Théo Barallon, Matthieu Kuzdzal, Bastien Martinez)
- Legal advice : Herbert Smith Freehills (Christophe Lefort, Mathias Dantin, Emma France, Edouard Thomas, Cyril Boulignat, Giuliano Lastrucci, Martin Dijos, Regis Oreal, Christelle Salmont-Lataste, Pierrrick Ferrero, Khadija Benchekroun, Sophie Brezin, Elisabeth Debregeas) and William Fry (Stephen Keogh, Fergus Devine, Laura O’Byrne, Colme Booth, James Downey) and Moran Ryan (Stephen Walker)
- Financial auditor and tax consultant: KPMG (Charles Abbey, Mathieu Gipoulou), KPMG Avocats (Mustapha Oussedrat, Caroline Chapuis), CJA (Jean Goncalves).