GLIL, Greencoat prep £270m wind farm spend

The pair have boosted their stakes in the UK’s second-largest onshore wind site following an automatic dilution and have agreed a call option for a further 14.9%.

UK pension infrastructure investor GLIL and listed wind fund Greencoat UK Wind are spending a further £67.8 million ($89.7 million; €75.8 million) to increase their stakes in the 523MW Clyde wind facility in Scotland.

The duo first invested in the 350MW Clyde wind farm in March last year after they paid £355 million for a 49.9 percent stake. It was agreed this would be diluted to 30 percent once the 173MW Clyde Extension becomes operational, scheduled for this month. GLIL and Greencoat have now agreed to increase this share to 35 percent after the latest investment.

The move is part of a wider £270 million planned expenditure on the site, with the investors agreeing a call option with SSE, the majority owners, to buy an additional 14.9 percent stake in Clyde for £202.2 million and bringing their ownership back up to its current levels. The call option can be exercised between 1 April 2018 and 30 June 2018.

The current 49.9 stake is held 28.2 percent by Greencoat and 21.7 percent by GLIL, with dilutions and further investments made aligned with this model. At 523MW, the extended Clyde facility would be the second-largest onshore wind farm in the UK after the 539MW Whitelee project.

“We’ve been really pleased with the performance of our Clyde investment over the last 15 months and have watched with interest SSE’s build-out of the extension,” Stephen Lilley, partner at Greencoat, said.

Greencoat has been directing its attention away from activities purely in the UK wind market, launching and listing an Irish renewables unit while also working on the development of its new and unlisted solar vehicle in recent months.

The additional investment by GLIL is its second confirmed deal since the West Yorkshire, Merseyside and Lancashire County pension funds joined founders London Pensions Fund Authority and Greater Manchester Pension Fund in the scheme. The platform was part of a consortium including Rock Infrastructure and Standard Life that committed £1 billion in June for the construction of 750 new trains for lines servicing London’s Waterloo Station.