Aquila deal based on UK solar strength

The German asset manager, which has bought a solar park near Bristol, has described the UK as one of the strongest growing markets for photovoltaic energy.

Aquila Capital, the Hamburg-based alternative investment firm, has purchased a UK solar photovoltaic park for an undisclosed sum.

The park, which is located in Banwell, near Bristol, has an installed capacity of 7.2 megawatt peak (MWp). It has been sold to Aquila by New Energy for the World, a German developer which constructed the park.

The park has been connected to the grid since its completion in March this year and operates under the UK’s Renewables Obligation scheme, a quota system based on market prices in which the purchasers of renewable energy benefit from tax relief. The scheme helped make the UK the largest market for photovoltaic investment in Europe last year.

“The UK has become one of the strongest-growing markets for photovoltaic energy in recent years,” said Boris Beltermann, head of solar and wind investments at Aquila, in a statement. “Its incentive schemes for renewable energy further strengthen the investment case for photovoltaic parks in the country.”

He added that Aquila has a photovoltaic portfolio across Germany, France and Japan amounting to 462MWp.

Aquila, which has nine offices in Europe and Asia Pacific and manages alternative assets of more than €8.4 billion, last month acquired six photovoltaic parks in the south of France with a combined installed capacity of 57MWp.

Also last month, the firm launched what it claimed was the first dedicated European hydropower fund for institutional investors with a minimum investment ticket size of €10 million.