Partners Group to invest up to €300m in Dutch offshore wind

The 730MW project received backing from the EIB in November and will get a subsidy €4.7bn less than originally expected.

Swiss investment firm Partners Group has agreed a deal in which it will invest up to €300 million in offshore wind sites off the coast of the Netherlands.

Investing through several of its infrastructure funds, the company has taken a 45 percent share in the 730MW Borssele III and IV offshore wind farms, becoming the largest shareholder in the consortium. The shares were bought from project partners Shell (20 percent), Mitsubishi (15 percent) and Eneco (10 percent). Dutch contractor Van Oord’s 10 percent share remains undiluted.

While the agreed purchase price is believed to have been set at up to €300 million, the final deal could be subject to change following ongoing negotiations. The European Investment Bank approved an undisclosed debt commitment to the wind farms in November.

The wind farm will benefit from a 15-year feed-in tariff once it begins commercial operations as expected in 2021. It is due to begin construction in the second half of this year. The original consortium secured the rights to build Borssele III and IV in December 2016 at a price of €54.5 per MWh. It will receive a total subsidy of €300 million, despite the Dutch government originally budgeting for a subsidy of €5 billion in 2013, before prices for offshore wind reduced substantially.

“Renewable energy continues to be a transformative trend within the infrastructure asset class and an important component in the future energy security of many countries,” said Brandon Prater, head of private infrastructure at Partners Group.

The investment is Partners Group’s second offshore wind deal following its maiden transaction in the sector when it invested more than €250 million in the 400MW Merkur project in Germany in August 2016. It has previously invested in onshore wind sites in Australia and solar platforms in Taiwan, Japan and the US.