DIF closes first of four Canadian solar deals

Canadian Solar, an Ontario-based renewables firm, has sold the Glenarm solar power plant to the Amsterdam-headquartered fund manager.

Canadian Solar, one of the world’s largest solar power companies, has sold the 10-megawatt (MW) Glenarm solar power plant to an affiliate of DIF Infrastructure III, a fund managed by Netherlands-based fund manager DIF.

The plant is valued at more than C$60 million (€43 million; $49 million) and will sell electricity under a 20-year feed-in tariff contract with the Ontario Power Authority. It reached commercial operation in November last year.

Construction and term financing for the project were provided by Natixis, Rabobank and Nord LB.

The Glenarm plant is the first of four solar facilities being acquired by DIF from Canadian Solar – the others being the Illumination, Beamlight and GoldLight plants. All the plants are located in Ontario.

DIF, which has over 300MW of solar projects under management in North America and Europe, opened its Toronto office – which is headed by former Macquarie executive Paul Huebener – in October 2012.

The firm completed its first Canadian investment in August 2013 when it acquired a 40 percent shareholding in the Royal Jubilee Hospital public-private partnership (PPP) project in Victoria, British Columbia, from Acciona, the Spanish construction group.

DIF Infrastructure III surpassed its hard cap when closing on €800 million in March 2013. The fund is currently around 65 percent invested with a new fundraising expected to be launched soon.

Founded in 2001, Canadian Solar has installed over 8 gigawatts of solar photovoltaic modules in over 70 countries during the last decade.