Anesco and Ingenious Clean Energy power up new solar farm trio

Solar farm WEBAnesco has powered up three brand new solar farms in the past four weeks, all of which are set to be acquired by Ingenious Clean Energy Income Plc (“ICE Plc”), a renewable energy fund which is seeking to raise up to £180 million through an equity placing on the London Stock Exchange later this month.

Despite challenging weather conditions, Anesco was able to get all three sites connected, commissioned and in operation well ahead of the changes in ROCs due to take place at the end of March. Any solar plants connected from 1 April 2014 will receive 1.4 ROCs, compared to the current 1.6 ROCs standard.

The three sites are situated in Chewton Mendip in Somerset, Malmesbury in Gloucestershire, and Huntingdon in Cambridgeshire. They have a combined capacity of close to 25MW, which is enough to heat, light and power more than 7,500 homes.

Separately, ICE Plc intends to acquire its fourth solar farm within the next few weeks, which will have a capacity of 24.5 MW and is scheduled for connection to the grid by the end of March.

Adrian Pike, CEO of Anesco, commented: “Once again Anesco has delivered on time and safely. We recently experienced some of worst weather this country has seen in decades, so our approach to building assets throughout the autumn has paid dividends. It has allowed us to focus on 1.4 ROC projects, which are now commencing construction.”

He added: “These three sites put ICE Plc in a unique position. The fund will have a significant portion of its asset portfolio already operational from the day it launches, rather than relying on a pipeline of assets and projects that come on line sometime in the future.”

Anesco has developed over 125 MW of solar PV plants in the UK and has established itself as one of the principal solar PV developers in the country. Additionally, Anesco is the UK’s leading energy efficiency solutions company and works with businesses, local authorities, housing associations and homeowners looking to reduce their carbon emissions.

Sebastian Speight, MD of Ingenious Clean Energy, said: “Throughout the fund launch process, our number one objective has been to guarantee a high proportion of our asset portfolio is in operation from day one, so that we can benefit from the generation income right away and don’t delay to deliver returns to our investors. We have a long standing relationship with Anesco and are delighted with what the team has again delivered for us. With these farms up on the grid now, our fund will include commissioned sites with a combined capacity of 50MW (enough to power more than 15,000 homes around the UK) by the time we come to admission on the LSE.”

Commenting on the political environment, Sebastian Speight added: “The Government has responded to the success of its policies in building capacity in the sector by reducing the level of government support over time. We are supportive of the Government’s desire to provide a long term roadmap for this process and a clear transition to contracts for differences. We have seen that the Government’s sensitivity to investor certainty through “grandfathering” fixed levels of support to existing projects has improved investor confidence in supporting the much needed investment into our future electricity generating infrastructure. We hope that any announcement in respect of the carbon floor price in the forthcoming budget will similarly aim to ensure investors have a clear understanding of the long term regulatory environment.”

The Ingenious Group is an investment and advisory group which has raised over £8.5 billion in alternative investments since 1998. The Ingenious Clean Energy team was established in 2010 to enable Ingenious clients to invest in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors.