Wind developer reportedly sells wind project portfolio to Islamic bank

A deal by British energy company Innogy, owner of National Wind Power (NWP), to sell a majority stake in its wind farm portfolio to two outside investors has been reported in the Independent newspaper after the details were leaked prior to the transaction's close. According to the Independent, the investors are believed to be London-based private equity firm Englefield Capital and Bahrain-based First Islamic Investment Bank. They will each take a 33% stake. The wind farms were developed and are operated by NWP. It has a portfolio of 13 wind farms across Britain totalling some 160 MW. Wind farm ownership could provide a useful investment vehicle for Islamic banks such as First Islamic, which under Sharia law are forbidden to lend money or receive interest, but are allowed to make equity investments. Innogy, which is owned by RWE of Germany, is known to have been looking to re-finance its wind farm assets to make way for the huge investment needed to meet the government's 10% renewables target. The company announced earlier this year that it was inviting investors to acquire a proportion of its existing wind farms by establishing a wind fund into which the wind farms would be sold.