Greencoat’s solar fund bags 142MW following £312m close

Greencoat Solar II is expected to reach close to £500m by the summer, following backing from a number of corporate UK pensions including ITV, Akzo Nobel, Northern Trust Nominees (Ireland), C & J Clark, Marks & Spencer and Syngenta.

UK-based Greencoat Capital’s second solar fund has bought a 142MW portfolio following a recent close on £312 million ($435.9 million; €354.3 million).

Greencoat Solar II acquired the portfolio, which comprises 24 sites across the UK, from Canadian Solar. It is valued at £191.2 million, according to the vendor. Greencoat said a demand for exposure from investors continues to drive opportunities and Infrastructure Investor understands the open-ended vehicle is expected to reach £500 million by the summer.

The increased investments follow a £262 million first close in September and an addition of 75MW to the portfolio in November. The fund is backed by UK corporate pension schemes including ITV, Akzo Nobel, Northern Trust Nominees (Ireland), C & J Clark, Marks & Spencer and Syngenta, according to UK Companies House filings.

All of the latest projects bought by the fund are operational, with 17 benefitting from the Renewables Obligation subsidy regime between 1.2 and 1.4 Renewable Obligation Certificates. The remaining seven are only linked to the feed-in tariff.

The deal brings Greencoat Solar II’s portfolio to about 227MW. Together with its predecessor which holds over 20 projects, Greencoat Capital now manages approximately 470MW of solar capacity in the UK, one of the largest solar asset owners in the country. It has invested about £600 million across its two unlisted vehicles since the formation of the group’s solar ambitions in the latter half of 2016.

The company’s Ireland-based listed company, Greencoat Renewables, last week spent €22.5 million on Lisdowney, a 9.2MW wind farm in Ireland – its first acquisition since buying 137MW from Brookfield Renewable Ireland upon launching last year.