New UK wind power developer secures funding

May 29, 2001à‚–Windforce, a new renewable energy development company, reported May 10 that it has secured $6 million in first-round funding from Gerrard Energy Ventures.

Windforce is developing investment opportunities by creating a diversified portfolio of large-scale wind energy projects worldwide. This funding will be used in the early development of projects that Windforce has cultivated in the Baltic regions, the Mediterranean, and Sweden, which total a potential 800 MW (or $800 million of capital costs)à‚–enough to power 500,000 homes.

Gerrard Energy Ventures (GEV) is an offshore subsidiary of Old Mutual, the London-listed financial services group, and was established to take advantage of the rapid changes in the European energy market. Alexander Kulpecz, Chairman of Windforce, said: “As an energy source, wind is increasingly commercially viable due to advances in new technology and the current legislation, which declares that by 2010 the EU has to have 10% of its energy from renewable sources.

GEV is one of the first investment vehicles designed to take advantage of these growth opportunities and we’re obviously delighted that they’ve identified Windforce as a company which can deliver high returns.”

Jim Whelan, Joint Managing Director of GEV, commented: “Windforce is a young and ambitious company headed by an experienced management team. We’re confident that they can deliver project returns in the mid-teens to mid-twenties. At GEV we have an ambitious target of 30% per annum growth and we’ve decided to focus first on early stage financing of high growth businesses such as Windforce.”

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