Three Hills backs Italian renewables firm

The London-based investment platform has provided €35m in equity and debt to Milan-headquartered Building Energy.

Three Hills Capital Partners (Three Hills) has announced an investment of €35 million in Building Energy Group (Building Energy), a Milan-based global independent power producer (IPP) focused on renewable energy.

The investment is made through both debt and equity, via a subscription to a €30 million bond listed on the ExtraMOT market on the Borsa Italiana (Italian Stock Exchange) and a €5 million equity investment in exchange for a minority stake.

The investment is in support of the company’s need to fund a pipeline of investments in the US, South Africa and Eastern Europe.

Formed in 2010 by a group of energy industry professionals, Building Energy operates mainly outside its domestic market, in particular the US and South Africa.

The firm focuses on “almost the entire value chain” including the development of greenfield and brownfield projects, EPC, operations and maintenance, IPP and the sale of assets. It has a current pipeline of 2,200 megawatts (MW) in 24 countries along with 430MW of assets under construction.

As well as Three Hills, the firm is also backed by Italian private equity firm Synergo.

Building Energy chief executive officer, Fabrizio Zago, said in a statement that the firm recently won bids for one of the largest biomass plants in Africa as well as a 140MW wind farm, a 4.7 mini-hydroelectric facility in South Africa, and the first 10MW solar park in Uganda. It is also soon to begin the construction of a 30MW wind farm in Iowa.

Mauro Moretti, Three Hills founder, said Building Energy represents the firm’s fourth investment in the last 18 months, with a further two transactions due to be finalised over the next eight weeks.

Three Hills, a pan-European investment platform founded in 2013 and based in London, focuses on investments in preferred capital instruments. It invests in mid-market companies and currently has €200 million in assets under management.