Sumitomo dives into French offshore market

Sumitomo Corporation has acquired a 29.5% interest in a joint venture (JV) developing two French offshore wind farms with a combined capacity of just under 1GW.

Both projects will comprise 62 of Siemens Gamesa's SWT-8.0-154 turbines
Both projects will comprise 62 of Siemens Gamesa's SWT-8.0-154 turbines

The Japanese investment company's buy-in into the Dieppe Le Tréport and Les Iles d’Yeu Noirmoutier projects reduces Engie’s stake from 47% to 31% and EDP Renewables’ (EDPR’s) interest from 43% to 29.5%.

Both developers announced they were looking to reduce their holdings in the two projects, both of which will be 496MW, in August 2017.

La Banque des Territories’ (part of Groupe Caisse des Dépôts) 10% stake in the two sites remains unaffected by Sumitomo’s acquisition.

The Engie-led consortium was awarded licenses for the two projects in 2014 in France’s second offshore wind tender.

Manufacturer Siemens Gamesa will provide 62 of its SWT-8.0-154 turbines for each project.

Sumitomo’s acquisition marks its entry into the French offshore wind sector.

The Japanese firm already owns stakes in offshore wind farms in neighbouring Belgium — 30% of the 216MW Northwind project, 39% in the 165MW Nobelwind site and 30% in the 219MW Northwester 2 wind farm.

It also owns interests in UK projects — 12.5% in the 353MW Galloper project and 12.5% in the 573MW Race Bank site.

The investment firm is also active in Chinese, South African and Japanese onshore wind markets.

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