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Ethiopian Geothermal Is Private Equity’s Next $4-Billion Bet

  • Billionaire hedge fund manager backing power developments
  • Ethiopia’s government planning to quadruple power supply
Ukraine's Trypilska TES Power Station Ahead Of Privatisation

Photographer: Joseph Sywenkyj/Bloomberg

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U.S. private equity and hedge funds are backing an effort by Ethiopia to turn itself into an exporter of electricity to the region, channeling at least $4 billion into geothermal projects across the nation.

The Ethiopian government has signed 25-year power purchase agreements with Reykjavik Geothermal Ltd., a developer led by Michael Philipp, the former head of Europe, Middle East and Africa for Credit Suisse Group AG. The company is backed by by billionaire hedge fund manager Paul Tudor Jones and Ambata Capital Partners, an investment firm run by Philipp.