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TIAA-CREF joins wind farm venture

TIAA-CREF, Cook Inlet Region Inc. and power generator Edison Mission Energy have set up Capistrano Wind Partners, which will invest $460m in US wind farms over the next 12-months.

Financial services firm TIAA-CREF has partnered with Cook Inlet Region Inc. (CIRI) and power generator Edison Mission Energy (EMI), a subsidiary of Edison Mission Group, to invest in wind farms across North America.  

The trio formed a new vehicle dubbed Capistrano Wind Partners, which will be backed with a $460 million commitment from TIAA-CREF and CIRI to acquire a number of wind projects owned and operated by EMI. The latter manages a portfolio of 31 wind projects in operation or under construction across the US, with a generating capacity of nearly 2,000 megawatts (MW), the partners said.

Capistrano Wind Partners’ first investments will see it allocate $238 million to acquire three operational wind farms from EMI. The remaining capital will be invested over the next year. The new vehicle is targeting a “diversified portfolio of US wind projects” to be acquired from EMG, according to a statement.

“These investments match TIAA-CREF’s long-term investment focus on infrastructure and energy projects that meet a growing need for energy and that we expect to deliver durable returns,” commented Lisa Ferraro, managing director of energy investments at TIAA-CREF. 

The new venture has already identified a series of wind farms located in Wyoming, Texas and Nebraska that will be added to the portfolio. Capistrano Wind Partners has the initial goal of purchasing seven projects with a combined power generation capacity of 500 MW.