Verbund to buy German hydroelectric plants from E.ON

Austrian power supplier Verbund is to buy 13 hydroelectric plants on Bavaria’s Inn River from German energy provider E.ON, the company has said.

The purchase price for the plants, which have a total capacity of 1847 GWh and which will raise Verbund’s generating capacity by 9 per cent, has not been disclosed but is said to include both a cash payment and a 20-year supply contract. The deal is expected to be finalized later this year.

Verbund chief Wolfgang Anzengruber said: “Verbund will benefit from numerous synergies as a result of the acquisition, especially given the proximity of hydroelectric plants belonging to our subsidiary Austrian Hydro Power.”

Every year Verbund markets around 22 700 GWh of electricity in Germany, from which it derives about 40 per cent of its annual turnover. The firm has 90 hydroelectric plants with a maximum capacity of 6000 MW apiece. Together, they produce some 22.8bn kWh of electricity annually.

GDF Suez to hold equal interest in two Greek power plants

Greece-based construction and energy company, GEK Terna, and French energy major, GDF Suez, have entered into a partnership whereby both groups will hold a 50 per cent stake in GEK Terna’s two Greek power plants, Heron I and Heron II.

As a result of the partnership, GDF Suez has become a shareholder of the two project companies that will run Heron I and II. Both power plants are clean gas fired plants and located in Viotia, about 120 km north of Athens.

Heron I is a 150 MW open cycle gas fired power plant that has been in operation since 2004. Heron II, a 450 MW combined cycle gas fired power plant, is currently under construction by Terna and is scheduled to come into commercial operation early in 2010.

Centrica to invest £2.3bn in Lake Acquisitions

Centrica plc, a UK-based energy company, has reached a definitive agreement to invest £2.3bn ($3.8bn), representing a 20 per cent stake, in Lake Acquisitions, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Electricite de France (EDF), a French utility company.

Lake Acquisitions is a UK-based special purpose acquisition company that has been formed for the acquisition of British Energy, a UK-based power generation company. The investment represents a 6 per cent discount, compared to the price of EDF’s offer for British Energy.

Centrica will also assume 20 per cent of the liability for contingent guarantees given by EDF in respect of the contingent value rights issued by Lake Acquisitions as part of its acquisition consideration for British Energy.

Moog buys German wind turbine parts maker

Moog Inc., from Elma, New York, has acquired the 60 per cent stake in a German wind turbine components manufacturer that it did not already own, the aerospace company have announced.

Moog paid nearly $31m in cash and debt to acquire the majority stake in LTi REEnergy GmbH, which makes motion control and drive systems used on wind turbines. Moog had paid $28m in June 2008 to purchase a 40 per cent stake in LTi.

“Our strategy is to advance the design of the wind industry’s motion controls by creating new, high-performance solutions, ranging from pitch control to rotor monitoring,” said Steven Huckvale, the president of Moog’s industrial systems business.

Moog, back in January, had paid $16m to buy a 70 per cent stake in Insensys, a UK company that makes components used in wind turbines.

Iberdrola divests 10 per cent stake in Gamesa

Iberdrola has divested a 10 per cent stake in wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica, leaving its shareholding at 14.1 per cent.

The transaction was carried out via Morgan Stanley and Company International, which placed a total of 24.3m shares among qualified and institutional investors.

The sale of this stake for €392m ($547m) represents a capital gain to Iberdrola of €112m.

The sale will not affect the strategic agreements between the Iberdrola Group and Gamesa, which will continue to be the principal supplier of wind turbines to the company’s renewable energy business, nor its standing as the principal shareholder of Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica.

Suez Energy sells stake in Omani power project

Belgium’s Suez Energy has completed the sale of its 32.8 per cent stake in Oman’s United Power Company (which operates the Al-Manah power plant) to UAE-based infrastructure fund, the Mena Fund.

The stake is understood to have been sold for about €25m ($35m). Suez had to sell its stake as part of its agreement with Muscat to acquire the Al-Rusail Power Company and develop the second phase of the Barka 2 independent water and power project (IWPP) in the country.

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Expansion plans: Siemens is further expanding production capacity at its gas turbine manufacturing plant in Berlin, creating 200 jobs. Almost one-third of a total investment of €42m was channelled into the new production facility.

Opening up markets: The UK’s Advanced Plasma Power (APP) has entered into a strategic partnership with Leveraged Green Energy, a private equity fund, to deploy APP’s Gasplasma technology across markets in Central and Eastern Europe and Canada.

Close cooperation: Alstom Hydro has signed a licensing cooperation agreement with Clean Current Power Systems Incorporated, a Canadian company specialized in the design and testing of tidal energy technology. The French company is set to position itself as a turnkey provider.

Exploring demand: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries has recently launched operations at newly-established offices in Kiev, Ukraine and Johannesburg, South Africa.

On loan: REpower Systems has signed an agreement with a consortium of banks for a syndicated loan of €600m ($843m). The three year loan consists of one tranche of €500m for the provision of warranties and guarantees, and a second tranche of €100m as working capital.

New appointment: The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has appointed Nigel Fine as its new chief executive and secretary.

Italian improvements: Enipower, an affiliate of Italian firm Eni, has signed service agreements with GE Energy to improve the efficiency, output and reliability of three power plants in Italy. The new six-year contractual service agreements will cover GE-built turbines, generators and compressors in Enipower’s plants in Livorno, Ravenna and Taranto.

Spanish share: RWE Innogy, through its subsidiary company Agrupació Energías Renovables (AERSA), has increased its share of the Spanish wind farm operator Danta de Energías from 44 per cent to 93.7 per cent.

Growing strong: Mitsubishi Electric Corp has announced its strategy for continued expansion of its power systems business, with an aim to achieve annual sales of ¥400bn ($4bn) in the period April 2013 to March 2016.