ERG buys 636MW from GDF Suez

ITALY: Italian energy group ERG has agreed to acquire 636MW in wind farms from French utility GDF Suez in a deal that will not only make it Italy's largest wind producer but also give it a foothold in Germany.

The enterprise value (debt and equity for 100% of the company) of the deal is €859 million, ERG said, or about €1.35 million per megawatt of installed capacity. ERG already had 488MW of installed wind capacity in Italy.

According to deal terms, ERG will initially acquire an 80% stake in IP Maestrale, the GDF Suez company that owns 550MW of Italian wind farms and 86MW in Germany, for a payment of €28.2 million. ERG could see its stake rise to 100% if options exercisable three years after closing are taken up.

The transaction, which is subject to antitrust clearance and acceptance of banks financing the wind farms of  change in control, is expected to close in the first quarter of 2013.

ERG is acquiring wind farms in Sicily (161MW), Sardinia (111MW), Campania (95MW), Apulia (91MW), Basilicata (55MW) and Molise (37MW), while German wind farms are located in the country’s central and  northern regions.