Pool, an American, is one of four partners who set up CWP with their own funds in 2006 before opening up its capital to renewable energy investor Good Energies and others in early 2007. The other partners are fellow American Mark Crandall, CWP chairman, Australian Alex Hewitt and Monaco-based Fabrizio Cagnasso. The four make up an executive board that manages the company, which is now 21% owned by Swiss Good Energies.
Initially, CWP focused on projects in Romania and Poland, but has broadened its horizons since. "We are in the early stages in Bulgaria and Turkey and could look at Ukraine, the Baltics and all sorts of other places," Pool says.
An investment banker by trade, Pool set up the first environmental investment fund in central Europe in 1997. Crandall has extensive experience in energy, including establishing Morgan Stanley's energy business in the 1980s. He also leads a private equity firm, PostScriptum, which invests primarily in renewable energy. Hewitt is CWP's wind expert and has been talking with developers in central Europe and scouting out potential sites for the last several years. Cagnasso handles tax, compliance and legal issues.
"One of our hallmarks is that we are quite flexible and adaptable to local market conditions," says Pool. Some time down the road, CWP will be looking at fund raising again after the 2007 financing that brought investors such as Good Energies into the firm. "We will be raising more money," says Pool. "We haven't decided exactly how to do it or whether to do it for construction or operation. We have plenty of money for development, so that's not an issue."