TRIG buys three UK solar plants

The acquisition nearly doubles the generating capacity of the group’s solar portfolio, which now represents 11 out of TRIG’s 27 investments.

The Renewables Infrastructure Group (TRIG) has bought three large-scale operational solar photovoltaic projects on agricultural sites in the south and east of England.

The London-based listed firm has paid a total of £73.7 million (€92.5 million; $123.9 million) for the power plants, which have a combined generating capacity of 56.6 megawatts (MW). The assets were previously owned by a joint venture between the British Solar Renewables group, a UK solar developer, and Spanish lender Santander.

The acquired portfolio comprises a 24.2MW plant at Parley Court Farm, Dorset; a 21.2MW plant at Egmere Airfield, Norfolk; and an 11.1MW plant at Penare Farm, Cornwall. The projects were constructed by Spain’s Isolux Corsán with modules supplied by New York-listed ReneSola.

“Solar now accounts for in excess of one third of the Group's investments by value, up from 10 percent at IPO, providing investors with good exposure to the two well-established and complementary technologies of onshore wind and solar PV,” said Richard Crawford, a partner at InfraRed Capital Partners, TRIG's investment manager.

All projects have received Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROC) accreditation at 1.6 ROCs per megawatt hour. Isolux Corsán will continue to provide operations and maintenance services.

The acquisition was funded partly from the group’s cash resources and partly from utilisation of its revolving acquisition facility which is now about £40 million drawn. The assets do not have project-level debt.

InfraRed launched TRIG last year in partnership with UK developer Renewable Energy Systems (RES). The fund, which raised £300 million through an IPO in June 2013, targets a 6 percent initial dividend yield and an IRR of 8 to 9 percent.

Last March, it raised an additional £66.2 million via a C share issue, short of its £85 million original target.