India: Brookfield, CPPIB, NIIF in fray to acquire Mahindra’s 600MW solar assets

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Brookfield, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) and Edelweiss Yield Plus Infrastructure Fund are among half a dozen investors in discussions to acquire nearly 600 megawatts (MW) of solar assets from Mahindra group’s renewable energy business, Mahindra Susten, said two people aware of the development, requesting anonymity.

“They have received offers from six financial investors including Brookfield, Edelweiss, CPPIB and NIIF. They will be shortlisting three bidders for the final round of negotiations,” said the first person. The portfolio of assets on sale includes two large operating solar projects: a 250MW project in Rewa, Madhya Pradesh, and another 250MW project that it won in Solar Energy Corp. of India and a few smaller projects, the second person added.

Email queries to Mahindra group and NIIF did not elicit a response. Brookfield, CPPIB and Edelweiss declined to comment.

This will be the second sale of operating solar assets by Mahindra Susten. Earlier in the year, the company sold around 160MW of solar projects to CLP India. Mahindra Susten has a portfolio of 1,569MW.

Mint reported in May that the Mahindra group had put up a large portfolio of solar assets for sale.

Mahindra Susten’s renewable energy assets are among many ongoing large portfolio sales in the infrastructure space, as financial investors continue to remain bullish on the sector’s prospects. Mint reported in July that private equity investors KKR and Actis are in talks to acquire a 435MW solar portfolio from Azure Power Global Ltd, which is backed by Canadian institutional investor Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ). Saudi Arabia’s Alfanar Group is also looking to sell half its 600MW wind power projects in India. Some others in the process of selling renewable projects include Finland’s state-controlled power utility Fortum Oyj, which is also looking for buyers for its 500MW solar projects in India.

Apart from financial investors, foreign strategic investors have also shown interest in investing large sums in established renewable platforms in India.

Last month, Japan’ financial services firm ORIX Corp. had said that it is investing $980 million in GIC Holdings Pte. Ltd and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority-backed Greenko Energy Holdings, in the single largest foreign investment in India’s clean energy space. Thailand’s state-owned energy giant PTT Group has been in talks with Goldman Sachs Group to buy a stake in ReNew Power Pvt. Ltd, one of the largest renewable energy producers in the country, The Economic Times had reported in July.

This article was first published on livemint.com

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.