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GIP leads record $5bn purchase of Equis Energy

The investment alongside PSP Investment and China Investment Corporation is said to be ‘the largest renewable energy generation acquisition in history’. The deal is part of GIP’s $15.8bn Global Infrastructure Partners III fund and its second renewables investment following its €1.2bn deal for a 50% share of the 450MW Borkum Riffgrund 2 offshore wind farm off the German coast.

Global Infrastructure Partners has joined forces with Canada’s PSP Investments and China Investment Corporation to acquire Singapore-headquartered Equis Energy in a deal worth $5 billion.

The transaction comprises $3.7 billion in equity and $1.3 billion in debt, amounting to what Equis described as “the largest renewable energy generation acquisition in history”. It will see the trio buy 1.9GW of operational, construction and shovel-ready onshore wind and solar assets across the Asia-Pacific region. Equis also owns a 115-strong development pipeline with a capacity of 9.1GW.

“Equis Energy is a unique success story in the APAC region as it has systematically executed its growth strategy since its founding five years ago,” said Adebayo Ogunlesi, chairman of GIP. “In that period, Equis Energy has become one of the leading renewable energy platforms in the region, with a best-in-class business model, a high-quality asset portfolio and an outstanding management team.”

The deal is part of GIP’s $15.8 billion Global Infrastructure Partners III fund and its second renewables investment following its €1.2 billion deal for a 50 percent share of the 450MW Borkum Riffgrund 2 offshore wind farm off the German coast.

Equis is the fund’s fourth transaction, all of which have occurred in the energy space, including a 20 percent stake in Spain’s Gas Natural Fenosa and its $1.8 billion purchase this month of crude oil transportation system Medallion Gathering and Processing.

Equis has raised more than $2.7 billion across five funds since it was formed in 2011, the largest being the $1 billion Equis Asia Fund II, which closed in 2015. While the group has been renewable energy-focused, it has also made investments in non-renewable energy assets such as Chinese natural gas distributor Oriental Gas and the Singaporean telecoms firm Asia Networks.

A spokesman for Equis confirmed to Infrastructure Investor that the deal only includes its renewable energy assets and those not in the space will continue to be held by its funds, which in addition to Equis Asia Fund II, includes its $647 million predecessor and a $298 million Direct Investment Fund. He declined to give a breakdown of the funds and their respective assets. He also declined to provide details on multiples received through the deal and the equity interest split between the buyers.

Equis initiated a strategic review of its assets in April, hiring Credit Suisse and JPMorgan as financial advisors and global co-ordinators. Infrastructure Investor revealed in July the firm had signed non-disclosure agreements with 51 parties and rejected a pre-emptive offer of $4.2 billion.

The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of next year.