Japanese trading company Sumitomo has acquired a participating stake of 29.5% in each of two French offshore wind farms with a combined capacity of 992MW that are being developed by Engie and EDP Renewables.
The two French offshore wind farms involved in the transaction are the Le Tréport and Noirmoutier projects, which have a capacity of 496MW each. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
Put together, the two offshore wind projects are expected to cost about €4bn with the funding to be mainly sourced through non-recourse project finance. Each of the projects will cost around €2bn.
Engie will keep a stake of 31% in the two French offshore wind farms while EDPR will hold 29.5% stake and La Banque des Territoires, part of Groupe Caisse des Dépôts, will hold a stake of 10%.
The Le Tréport offshore wind farm is being developed in the English Channel nearly 15km off the French coast. On the other hand, the Noirmoutier offshore is being developed in the Bay of Biscay nearly 12km off the French coast.
Both the French offshore wind farms have a 25-year lifespan and have been designed to meet the power consumption requirements of 1,640,000 people. Their power offtake is secured through long term power purchase agreement.
Through the transaction, Sumitomo will bring to the consortium its expertise in development, construction and operation of offshore wind farms, said Engie. Sumitomo is already engaged in offshore wind projects in Belgium and the UK that have a total installed capacity of more than 1.5GW.
Sumitomo, in a statement, said: “Engie is one of our strategic partners and we aim to strengthen our partnership through our further collaboration on renewable energy and other business fields. Furthermore, the Projects signal the start of a long term partnership with EDP Renewables, with whom Sumitomo Corporation will seek collaborations on renewable energy businesses.”
The two French offshore wind farms will be equipped with 62 D8 8MW offshore wind turbines from Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy. The Le Tréport and Noirmoutier projects are expected to create about 3,000 direct and indirect jobs during the construction and operation phases.
In addition to the two French offshore wind farms, Sumitomo acquired 30% stake in the 219MW Northwester 2 offshore wind farm, which is being developed by Parkwind in the Belgian waters of the North Sea.