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Canadian firm dives back into German waters with wind buy

Northland Power’s acquisition of the €1.2bn Deutsche Bucht project gives the company its first full ownership of an offshore wind farm following majority investments in the Gemini and Nordsee One sites.

Canadian IPP Northland Power has acquired a 252MW offshore wind farm off the coast of Germany, a project expected to cost about €1.2 billion.

The North American company bought the Deutsche Bucht project from UK-based investment firm Highland Group Holdings, which itself acquired the site from German developer Windreich in 2012 before the wind company filed for insolvency in 2013.

Northland Power said it expects to reach financial close in the middle of this year and will invest C$400 million ($298.8 million; €282 million) of equity in the project, funded by a mixture of cash, corporate liquidity and share issuances.

Deutsche Bucht has a contracted 13-year feed-in tariff agreement with the German government that will see the wind farm earn €184 per MWh for the first eight years of the project’s lifecycle and €149 per MWh for the remaining five years, after which it will enter the German wholesale electricity market. Northland said the majority of the returns generated from the project will be earned during the feed-in tariff period, which will begin once construction is complete in 2019.

Deutsche Bucht will be located some 77km away from the 332.1MW Nordsee One offshore wind farm, in which Northland holds an 85 percent stake. The firm is also the 60 percent owner of the 600MW Gemini offshore project in the Netherlands.

In the company’s annual report published last week, Northland said that European offshore wind farms “will continue to be a focus” for the firm, while adding that it is working on its offshore wind efforts in Taiwan, where it signed a MoU in December for investments worth 157 billion Taiwan dollars ($5.1 billion; €4.7 billion) alongside Singapore-based Yushan Energy.