Aquila tightens grip on Norwegian hydro

The German asset manager bought Smakraft’s portfolio of 45 operating hydropower plants.

German asset manager Aquila Capital has closed its third hydropower deal in 18 months with the acquisition of Norwegian small-scale hydropower plant operator Smakraft.

The deal adds 45 operating plants generating over 500GW/hour annually and tightens Aquila’s grip on the Norwegian hydropower sector. “The acquisition of Smakraft will consolidate our operations in Norway. It will make us the largest operator of small-scale hydropower plants in Europe,” said co-head of hydropower Oldrik Verloop.

In addition to Smakraft, which it bought for an undisclosed amount from shareholders Statkraft, Agder Energy, BKK and Skagerak Energi, Aquila owns stakes in three Norwegian hydropower operators.

Aquila did not specify which pockets of capital it used to acquired Smakraft, but it is likely the deal was funded from its recently launched European hydropower vehicle and its €500 million hydropower joint venture with Dutch pension manager APG.

The fund, which is targeting an undisclosed amount, is looking to invest in five to 10 hydro generating portfolios worth around €1 billion.