NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 18 – Emerging Market Investor Actis has acquired 88 percent of Kipeto energy making it the largest shareholder of the 100MW wind power project.
Actis acquired equity interest of International Finance Corporation (IFC) and African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM).
The project is now funded by equity from Actis (88 percent) and Kenyan company Craftskills Wind Energy International (12 percent) alongside senior debt from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (“OPIC”), the US Government’s development finance institution.
“We are delighted to have achieved what we set out to do in co-developing the project and mobilizing development-stage financing for the project’s implementation. We have a long history with Actis which gives us complete confidence in their ability to guide the company through its next stage of growth and complete the project to the high standards established during the development phase of the project,” Jumoke Jagun-Dokunmu, IFC Regional Director for Eastern Africa, said.
Once operational, Kipeto, located in Kajiado county, will be the country’s second largest wind farm and will supply 100MW of clean energy to the national grid.
The Kipeto project was originally conceived by Craftskills Wind Energy International, with support from General Electric (“GE”).
AIIM and IFC InfraVentures co-developed the project with Craftskills from 2014 until early 2018, executing a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Kenya Power and Lighting in 2016.
The project is now preparing for the construction of 60 GE 1.7-103 wind turbines and a 17km (220KV) transmission line to carry the power to Isinya substation in Kajiado County, providing power to the equivalent of approximately 40,000 homes in the region.
It is anticipated that more than 400 job opportunities will be created during the construction phase of the project and an additional 70 permanent jobs during the operational phase.
“We would like to thank the local community for their support of this project from the outset. We have leased and secured more than 60 plots within the project area for the wind turbine footprint and the transmission line through voluntary participation of land owners, which is a first for any project of this kind in Kenya, and we’re constructing new houses for the families outside the project’s 500m buffer zone, so local buy-in has been a vital component.’’said Kenneth Namunje, Director of Craftskills and Chairman and Director of Kipeto Energy Limited.