Mainstream Raises $760 Million for South African Wind Farms

Mainstream Renewable Power Ltd., a Dublin-based clean-energy developer, raised $760 million to build three wind farms in South Africa.

Loans will cover 75 percent of project costs, or about 6.75 billion rand ($573 million), and equity the remainder, Barry Lynch, Mainstream’s managing director of onshore procurement, construction and operations, said Thursday by e-mail. The Development Bank of South Africa will provide 30 percent to 40 percent and Barclays Plc will lend the rest, he said.

Mainstream was awarded contracts for the wind farms by the Department of Energy under the third round of its Renewable Energy Procurement Programme. The nation has so far procured about 3,900 megawatts of capacity through the three competitive rounds of bids, with about $10 billion invested. That exceeds the 3,725 megawatts initially sought from five bid windows. An additional 3,600 megawatts will be sought, the department said on Dec. 12.

“Mainstream has been awarded more megawatts than any other developer,” Lynch said.

Construction of the wind farms in Northern Cape Province is expected to start this month. Two will have a capacity of 140 megawatts each and one will total 80 megawatts. The smaller project is expected to start working next year and the others in 2017.

The equity portion is being provided by Mainstream, Actis LLP, Thebe Investment Corp., a fund managed by Old Mutual Investment Group, Futuregrowth Asset Management and Genesis Eco-Energy Development with Lereko Metier Sustainable Capital, Mainstream said.

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