TRIG seals dual solar deal

The London-listed fund has paid £21m for 12MW worth of UK plants, its first acquisition since acquiring an initial portfolio of 18 renewables assets in August.

The Renewables Infrastructure Group (TRIG), an investment fund listed on the London Stock Exchange, has bought two large-scale ground-mounted solar farms in the South of England.

The investment will cost the fund £21 million (€25 million; $34 million), including the capital needed to fund the extension of one of the farms. The assets, which have been acquired without project debt, are expected to generate enough power to cover the annual consumption of around 3,700 UK households.

“We see a good pipeline of available assets in both solar PV and onshore wind in the UK and across Northern Europe, enabling further build-out of TRIG’s portfolio in due course,” said Richard Crawford, a director at InfraRed Capital Partners, TRIG’s Investment Manager, in a statement.

The first plant, christened the Parsonage Solar Park, is located near Ilminster in Somerset. Already fully operational with a capacity of 7 megawatts (MW), it will be acquired from a private construction capital fund managed by Adiant Capital Partners. The farm qualifies for the UK’s Renewables Obligation Certificates – the government’s support scheme to renewables electricity tariffs – and has a three-year off-take agreement with GDF Suez Energy UK.

The second plant is Marvels Farms Solar Park, located on the Isle of Wight. With a total capacity of 5MW, it is comprised of an established operational site commissioned in 2011 and an extension expected to be completed over the coming weeks. The extension will benefit from a new 20-year feed-in tariff while the existing section has 23 years remaining on its original feed-in arrangement, and the plant has a three-year offtake agreement with SSE Energy Supply.

TRIG was borne out of partnership between UK asset manager InfraRed Capital Partners and industry player Renewable Energy Systems (RES). The duo, which raised £300 million through an IPO on the London Stock Exchange last June, target a 6 percent initial dividend yield with inflation-linked growth and an IRR of 8 percent to 9 percent.

This latest deal will help bring diversification to TRIG’s portfolio, which is now comprised of 14 onshore wind farms and 6 solar assets. The rest of the portfolio, which has an aggregate capacity of 246MW, was bought upon accession of the company to the stock exchange last August.