AXA Private Equity is a high profile European diversified private equity firm, and neoen is a French independent renewable energy producer.
Operating as a consortium, the companies will acquire Poweo’s renewable energy activities from VERBUND, Austria’s leading electricity company.
Poweo ENR group, an independent renewable power players in France, has more than 120 MW of renewable power projects in operation, as well as a large portfolio of projects in development in onshore & offshore wind, solar and biomass assets.
In a second phase, AXA Private Equity says it will retain the wind assets in operation in France, while neoen will retain other activities such as the PV solar farms in operation in France; various other assets under development (solar, onshore wind, and biomass projects in France, Italy and Poland); and Poweo’s position within a leading offshore wind consortium.
As a result of this transaction, AXA will become the 4th largest wind farm operator in France with more than 300MW of wind capacity under operation and construction (including 10 operating wind farms in the regions of Lorraine, Champagne, Burgundy and Languedoc totalling above 100MW).
This move follows several investments made by the firm in the renewable energy sector in Europe to date, including a renewable platform developed with the Tozzi Group in Italy in 2007, and the acquisition in 2009 of Babcock & Brown’s wind farm portfolio in France, renamed Kallista. The Poweo deal would push AXA’s renewable capacity to 600MW.
Through this investment, neoen will have acquired more than 50 MW of operating assets or permitted projects (wind and solar) and more than 70 MW of state-approved biomass projects, alongside a broad and strong pipeline of early-stage projects.