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KKR, Acciona plan AEI float

The IPO will not be an exit for the US manager, which intends to remain invested in the Spanish renewables business for 10 to 15 years.

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR) is looking to list Acciona Energía International (AEI), the international energy generation business of Madrid-listed developer Acciona, in which it owns a minority stake.

While the timing for a potential float is as yet unknown, a spokesperson for KKR told Infrastructure Investor the IPO would not represent an exit for the US asset manager, which intends to keep its interest in the business for 10 to 15 years.

Listing AEI will give the company’s shareholders access to capital to grow the business at the most attractive cost, the spokesperson said. The listed entity will be structured as a YieldCo, a publicly traded company that owns a portfolio of projects and distributes the cash flows produced to its shareholders.

Several banks have reportedly been hired to work on the listing, which could value the unit at as much as $2 billion. It remains unclear whether Acciona is looking to sell shares of AEI in the IPO.

KKR initially invested in AEI last June, spending €417 million for a one-third stake in the unit. Acciona Energía, the Spanish group’s energy division, retained the remaining two-thirds.

The deal, which is still subject to regulatory approval, gave AEI an enterprise value of €2.6 billion, including €1.3 billion in equity and €1.3 billion in net debt. Under the agreement, Acciona Energía is due to operate AEI’s assets for at least 20 years while also giving the unit a right of first offer on future renewables projects developed by the group.

Jesús Olmos, head of KKR infrastructure in Europe and head of KKR’s operations in Spain, said the deal was in line with KKR’s efforts to diversify its infrastructure fund, which has so far made 12 investments comprising five renewable energy deals as well as transactions in the water, district heating, locomotive leasing and parking sectors.

KKR Global Infrastructure Investors, a 2010-vintage fund, reached a final close on $1 billion. The firm launched the vehicle’s successor in February with a target range of between $1.5 billion and $2 billion.