Aquila Capital increased its transaction track record in real asset investments by EUR 1 billion in 2015, with a total of 12 transactions. 2015 saw significant institutional investor appetite for real asset investment solutions, spurred on by continued demand for stable cash yields, growth potential and risk mitigation. Aquila Capital catered to this growing demand with the launch of two dedicated renewable energy funds in 2015 and increased its European renewable energy footprint with a number of significant hydropower, wind power and photovoltaic acquisitions. Looking ahead, Aquila Capital expects further strong growth in the sector, as well as significant investment opportunities in the Spanish residential real estate market.
Highlights of Aquila Capital’s activities include:
- Photovoltaics & Wind
In wind power, the alternative investment manager acquired a majority stake in Norway’s largest operational wind park, co-investing with the Norwegian energy companies, Østfold Energi, Fitjar Kraftlag and Vardar Boreas. Continuing its strong track record in the sector, Aquila Capital was awarded a wind portfolio mandate by the largest Czech energy company in Central Eastern Europe at the beginning of 2016.
As one of the largest investors in the European photovoltaic market 1, in 2015 Aquila Capital continued to broaden its geographical reach in the sector with two photovoltaic investments in the UK, as well as a 57MWp photovoltaic portfolio in the south of France.
In addition, Aquila Capital launched a diversified photovoltaic and wind power fund - the Aquila Capital Renewables Fund III S.A., SICAV-SIF - which had its first close in May 2015. The fund, which aims to deliver an IRR of 5-7% with long-term stable cash yields over the term of the investment, saw investments of EUR 100 million deployed across a diversified portfolio of 13 operational renewable energy plants in less than ten months.
In addition to launching the world’s first dedicated hydropower fund for institutional investors - the Aquila Capital European Hydropower Fund S.A., SICAV-SIF, two significant hydropower transactions stood out for the firm in 2015: Aquila Capital acquired Norway’s second-largest operator of small-scale hydropower plants, Norsk Grønnkraft AS, at the beginning of 2015 and won the bid to acquire the largest operator, Småkraft AS, at the end of the year, further expanding its footprint as an established hydropower platform in Norway.
The recent acquisition makes Aquila Capital the largest operator of small-scale hydropower plants in Europe, with a total number of 102 hydropower plants under operation.
- Real estate
2015 also saw Aquila Capital launch a dedicated real estate strategy for institutional investors that focused on the reinvigoration of the Spanish residential real estate market. Through targeted investments in the Spanish residential property market, including the recent acquisition of the largest housing development project in Madrid, Aquila Capital has built a strong reputation in the country’s real estate sector.
Roman Rosslenbroich, CEO and Co-Founder of Aquila Group, said:
“Driven by ongoing market volatility and low interest rates, we continue to see significant demand for real asset investments from investors searching for alternative cash yields. With a proven track record of 129 realised transactions in more than 16 countries and a strong deal flow, we are ideally positioned to cater to this growing demand. This is reflected by the continued development of our investment portfolio, which most recently saw the launch of a dedicated infrastructure strategy that gives institutional and semi-institutional investors access to a balanced and diversified portfolio of direct and fund investments. Launched at the beginning of this month, the strategy focuses on generating stable cash yields and has a minimum investment period of two years – significantly shorter than that of classic infrastructure investments.”
To date, Aquila Group manages alternative assets of over EUR 7.1 billion for a global investor base.
- 1 The „Top 70 overview of European solar PV portfolios“ is provided by Solarplaza International BV („Solarplaza“). Solarplaza assumes no responsibility for any errors or omissions in these materials. Solarplaza makes no commitment to update the information contained herein. The data used for this overview are as of May 31, 2015. www.solarassetmanagementeu.com
About Aquila Capital
Established in 2001, Aquila Capital is committed to provide institutional investors worldwide with alternative investment solutions in real assets, financial and private markets. Applying a multi-disciplinary investment approach, Aquila Capital’s range of alternative investments is managed by dedicated specialists in their respective asset classes and underpinned by an infrastructure that combines strong operations, stringent corporate governance and a successful track record. Aquila Capital has been dedicated to develop alternative investment solutions since its establishment. Over 200 professionals across eight offices globally are working across the whole value chain of alternative investments to generate stable, positive returns for investors.
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