APG, HgCapital plot €300m spend on Swedish wind farm

The 288MW greenfield project will be the largest of its kind in Sweden and is the first ramp-up of HgCapital’s renewables activities in four years.

Dutch pension fund manager APG has teamed up with an HgCapital-owned company to spend €300 million on what is set to be Sweden’s largest single-site wind farm.

The €452 billion pension scheme and Swedish wind developer Vasa Vind, owned by the UK-based private equity firm since 2013, seek to have the 288MW Askalen wind farm operational by 2020. The duo said the region’s wind resource will make Askalen “one of the most efficient” European wind farms.

The project is one of the first to be announced since Sweden and Norway agreed an extension to their joint green certificate system, a subsidy scheme thrown into doubt by Norway last year. The new agreement will see Sweden add 18TWh of renewable power by 2030.

APG’s investment will be made on behalf of the ABP and PPF APG pension funds, with the former aiming to increase its investments in renewable energy to €5 billion by 2020, a figure which at the end of last year stood at €2.8 billion after a 25 percent year-on-year increase.

“Our clients’ aim is to increase strongly their investments in renewable energy while contributing to their risk-adjusted financial returns, therefore APG will take a leading role in initiating new projects,” said Dirk Hovers, senior portfolio manager in infrastructure at APG. “Scandinavian power is a strategic area for our infrastructure investments in renewables.”

HgCapital’s outlay in Vasa Vind came as part of its €542 million Renewable Power Partners 2 fund which closed in 2011, a vehicle whose performance was significantly damaged by the Spanish government’s cuts to the renewables sector and which the firm continues to seek compensation for.

The move to build Askalen is HgCapital’s first major move in renewables since 2013 and last year it announced its renewable energy unit would spin-out into an asset investment platform called Asper Investment Management.

HgCapital had not responded to requests for comment by press time.