France-based global environmental services company Veolia Environnement recently added wind power to its business empire when it signed a memorandum of understanding to buy 50% of Eolfi, a local wind project developer and operator, through a capital increase of EUR 18 million. Eolfi brings to the table 53 MW turning in France and 74 MW in Greece, 367 MW under construction and an anticipated capacity of 3000 MW in 2012. The company only started life in 2004 as a venture capital fund, to which in 2006 it added France's first local mutual fund dedicated to wind power, raising over EUR 100 million in total. Eolfi launched three new funds this year mainly focused on France, Greece and Poland. "Our capacity to raise our own funds rapidly and to construct parks in Europe convinced Veolia Environnement to make Eolfi its exclusive subsidiary in wind power," says president Alain Delsupexhe. Looking forward, Eolfi expects to build wind plant on Veolia-owned sites and also to move into China, where Veolia has been active since 1992. Eolfi is forecasting revenues of EUR 11 million in 2008 and may consider listing on the stock market. As for Veolia, it is keen to add renewable energy to the services it offers clients. The company already produces 6266 MW of capacity from co-generation and conventional fuels through its subsidiary Dalkia. "Eolfi has a huge competency in raising funds, while Veolia has experience in developing local projects with a complicated mix of private and municipal inputs," says the company.
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