Transnational Corp. Completes Payment for Nigerian Power Plant

Transnational Corp. of Nigeria Plc completed payment for the $300 million Ughelli power plant, the company said in an e-mailed statement.

Transcorp, which made a 25 percent deposit six months ago, paid the remaining 75 percent yesterday, the deadline set by Nigerian Bureau of Public Enterprises for power projects worth more than $1.3 billion. The bureau hasn’t announced if bidders for 10 other power projects had met the deadline. Its spokesman, Joseph Anichebe, didn’t immediately answer calls seeking comment.

Nigeria, Africa’s top oil producer, is selling majority stakes in power plants and letting private investors buy as much as 70 percent of 11 distribution companies spun out of the former state-owned utility. It’s seeking the investment to curb power shortages in the West African nation of more than 160 million people.

“It is the beginning of an era where power becomes constant and within reach,” Adeoye Fadeyibi, the chief executive officer of Transcorp’s subsidiary, Transcorp Ughelli Power Ltd., said today in the statement.

The company plans to increase the plant’s power generation from 300 megawatts to at least 1,070 megawatts within five years, according to the statement.

Africa Finance Corp., UBA Bank Plc, FCMB Group Plc and Fidelity Bank Plc provided a $215 million debt-financing facility to help Transcorp buy the plant that generates 8 percent of Nigeria’s current power supply, AFC said today in a separate statement.

Transcorp announced five months ago it wanted to raise $95 million to refinance Ughelli and expand investments in oil exploration and hotels.

The company’s stock rose 8.1 percent to 1.33 naira by the close in Lagos, the commercial capital, the biggest gain since June 27. The shares advanced 34 percent this year, compared with a 30 percent increase in the Nigerian Stock Exchange All-Share Index.

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