Actis and Mainstream Renewable Energy launch US$1.9bn clean energy initiative for Africa

cleanenergy-ArtemyoLagalag-flickrLekela Power is the eighth clean energy initiative being spearheaded by Actis. (Image source: ArtemyoLagalag/Flickr) UK-based private equity firm Actis and global solar and wind energy company Mainstream Renewable Power have launched a pan-African renewable energy generation platform Lekela Power for US$1.9bn

Lucy Heintz, partner and head of renewable energy at Actis, said, “With soaring demand and funding constraints, Africa’s need for renewable energy is pressing. In South Africa, for example, 95 per cent of the country’s electricity is generated by coal-fired power stations. While the region has significant natural and fossil fuel resources, a lack of long-term investment has led to a reliance on emergency and short-term diesel generation.”

The joint venture project will provide nearly 900MW of solar and wind power by 2018 across the sub-continent. According to the terms of the agreement, Mainstream Renewable Power will take responsibility for the end-to-end management of projects; including site identification, project development, construction management as well as operation and maintenance of plants.

Barry Lynch, managing director of onshore procurement, construction and operations at Mainstream Renewable Power, said, “We are delighted to be working on our third collaboration with our financial partner Actis, which once again draws on Mainstream’s world-class portfolio of wind and solar projects and our track record of delivering them into commercial operation on time and on budget.”

Earlier in February, Mainstream Renewable Power announced the start of construction of three wind farms in South Africa, which will form the core of the Lekela Power project. The projects have a combined capacity of 360MW and would be located in Northern Cape. They are expected to begin commercial operation in 2016.

Additionally, the company is also working on the 225MW Ayitepa wind project in Ghana, which will be transferred to the Lekela project platform.

Lekela Power is the eighth renewable energy initiative for Actis, which has previously launched ventures of similar kinds in sub-Saharan Africa and Central America.

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