Swiss buyout firm Partners Group will invest a total of A$700 million ($527.5 million) in the development of a large-scale renewable energy platform in Australia on behalf of its clients, the firm said in a press release.
For the development of the platform, which will be known locally as the Grassroots Renewable Energy Platform, Partners Group has teamed up with local developer CWP Renewables (CWP), who is also an investor in the project.
The two companies had previously worked together in 2016 for the development of Sapphire Wind Farm, a 270MW development project in New South Wales, in which Partners Group had invested A$250 million.
The project, which is due to be completed by October 2018, will generate enough energy to power 110,000 Australian households and offset over 600,000 tonnes of carbon emissions during every year of operation. Partners Group said that the new Grassroots platform will be seeded with the Sapphire Wind Farm project and will, in addition, construct over 1.3GW of new wind power, solar power and battery storage assets across Australia within the next four years.
The second project under the Grassroots platform will be Crudine Ridge Wind Farm, a 135MW construction-ready wind farm near Mudgee in New South Wales that will provide a further 400 GW hours of annual power output to the grid, which will be enough to serve 55,000 homes.
Though the construction of the wind farm will only be completed by September 2019, half of its energy has already been sold to Powershop, an Australian electricity provider that provides 100 per cent green energy to its retail customers. In addition to Crudine Ridge Wind Farm, there are a number of other pipeline projects for Grassroots, which comprise a combination of wind, solar and battery storage assets.
“When we invested in Sapphire Wind Farm, one of the key attractions for us was the project’s potential to anchor an Australian renewable energy platform. Partners Group and CWP have a project pipeline of 1.3GW in generation capacity across wind and solar power, offering the scope to be selective and develop Grassroots into a quality renewables platform of significant scale,” said Benjamin Haan, Head of Private Infrastructure Asia-Pacific at Partners Group.
Partners Group has developed around 2GW of solar and wind energy capacity on behalf of its clients across the Asia-Pacific region, including Australia. Previous investments include a 550MW Taiwanese solar power development platform and the 240MW Ararat Wind Farm development in Australia, which Partners Group invested into in August 2016 and June 2015, respectively.
Most recently, Partners Group announced the sale of its stake in Japan Solar, a 610MW platform of Japanese solar power assets, which the firm had backed in 2013.