At the same time, Solar Millennium sold profit participation rights in the Ibersol Kraftwerks GmbH investment company that holds 17% in the Spanish Ibersol power plant project to the Ibersol Fonds. The corresponding prospectus was approved by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) last week.
Ibersol is the fourth Concentrating Solar Power projects developed by Solar Millennium in the South of Spain. The parabolic trough power plant with a capacity of 50 megawatts is to be built in the southern Spanish Extremadura province. Following approximately two and a half years of construction, the power plant is expected to be connected to the grid in 2013. In addition to the ExtremaSol power plant company, Solar Millennium and Ferrostaal continue to hold further stakes in this Concentrated Solar Power project.
The ExtremaSol Concentrating Solar Power plant company will be involved in construction financing for the Ibersol plant. The company intends to finance the required funds by issuing its own bond which should also address institutional investors and family offices. This bond is to be listed on the stock exchange and can thus be traded, just like the last corporate bond issued by Solar Millennium.
By establishing the Ibersol Fund, Solar Millennium offers private investors another possibility to directly benefit from the earnings of a solar-thermal power plant. The company forecasts a total payout of 275% including capital redemption for the Ibersol Fund (before asset-based fees and German withholding tax).
Oliver Blamberger, CFO of Solar Millennium: "Besides the performed sales, we are planning further sales of stakes to investors following the example of Andasol 3 as provided for by our business model." Solar Millennium continuously adapts its financing strategy to the current market situation and demand. The company structure of the Ibersol power plant project is designed in such a way that further investors can be involved in the project. With the earlier Andasol 3 project, for example, the Company was able to involve Stadtwerke München (Munich City Utility), RheinEnergie and RWE Innogy as investors by applying a similar financing strategy. According to the management, the negotiations regarding the entry of additional institutional investor groups in the Ibersol project are well under way.
Dr. Norbert Hagen, Spokesman of the Management of I.C.M. InvestmentBank assesses the sales prospects for the planned bond as follows: "By closely observing the market over the last few months we realized that there is considerable interest in this type of investment product. I am convinced that we will be able to place the planned "electricity" bond for financing our power plant stake very fast."
Like its sister projects Andasol 1, 2 and 3 in the province of Andalusia, Ibersol is to feature large thermal storage facilities, meaning that the operating hours and thus the amount of electricity generated can be nearly doubled compared to a solar power plant without storage.
The power plant is basically identical in construction to the Andalusian Andasol 3 solar power plant, which is currently under construction and scheduled to connect to the grid in 2011. Collectors with a total length of some 90 kilometers and a collector surface of half a million square meters – equaling the surface of approximately 70 soccer fields – are planned for the Ibersol power plant, which is to extent over a surface of some two square kilometers. The project was granted pre-registration by the Spanish government together with Andasol 3 at the end of 2009, thus ensuring that the electricity generated there will be paid in terms of the Spanish law on feed-in tariffs for renewable energies.
The acquisition price of the stakes paid by ExtremaSol Kraftwerks GmbH was not disclosed.
Solar Millennium AG, Erlangen, is an international company in the renewable energy sector, with its main focus on solar-thermal power plants. Together with its subsidiaries and associates, the Company specializes in parabolic trough power plants and has managed to take a globally leading position in this field.
Solar Millennium strives to further extend its expertise in the area of solar-thermal power plants with the aim of achieving and securing sustainable technology leadership. As such, the Company covers all important business sectors along the value chain for solar-thermal power plants: from project development and financing to the technology and the turnkey construction and operation of power plants. In Spain, Solar Millennium developed Europe’s first parabolic trough power plants and realized these together with partners. Additional projects are planned around the world with an overall capacity of more than 2,000 megawatts: here the current regional focus is on Spain, the US, India, China, the Middle East and North Africa. More information at www.SolarMillennium.de
Solar-thermal power plants generate electricity by converting solar radiation into heat energy. In a parabolic trough power plant, trough-shaped mirrors concentrate the incidental radiation onto a pipe in the focal line of the collector. Its absorption heats a fluid heat medium in the pipe, generating steam in the power block through a heat exchanger. As in conventional power plants, the steam powers a turbine to generate electricity. By integrating thermal storage, electricity can be supplied on demand, even after sunset.