Piramal Finance Ltd (PFL), a part of the Ajay Piramal-controlled Piramal Enterprises, has sanctioned Rs 700 crore to ACME Solar Holdings, Delhi-based Independent Power Producer, with a portfolio of over 1.8 GW of solar power across 14 states. The company’s current operational capacity is over 1 GW and is expected to reach 1.4 GW by September-end.
Earlier in 2016, ACME Solar raised Rs 499 crore from PLF and its partner, Dutch pension fund APG Asset Management NV. In 2014, PLF and APG committed to invest $1 billion in infrastructure companies in India over three years.
ACME Solar has reportedly used the first tranche received from PLF to buy out the company’s stakes from French company EDF Energies Nouvelle and Luxembourg-based EREN Renewable Energy that had picked up 25 per cent each in group company, ACME Solar Energy Pvt Ltd, earlier in 2013.
“The current funding provides us with the required flexibility to invest in the solar and electric transportation business and ensure timely completion of projects,” Manoj Kumar Upadhyay, ACME Group Chairman and MD, said commenting on the new deal.
Khushru Jijina, Managing Director, Piramal Finance Ltd, said ACME had a strong track record of execution, with projects spread across the country, which reduces the off-take risk, and had signed PPAs for the complete portfolio. “In addition, our first round of funding has already seen pre-payments taking place in a short span of time,” he added in the statement.
According to Jijina, renewable energy has been one of the key focus areas for the Piramal group as it believed, given the government’s focus on clean energy, renewables will be one of the key contributors to the energy requirement of the country.
The deal with ACME Solar was made through Corporate Finance Group (CFG) of PFL and marks the entry of the financial arm of Piramal Enterprises into the new product line – Flexi Line of Credit – for the renewable energy sector.
Last year, PLF entered this niche, generally dominated by banks, by introducing credit lines and flexi lease rental discounting, known as LRD, for real estate developers. Within three months of launching LRD, the company had sanctioned Rs 2,000 crore for completed commercial assets that included office and retail space, the company said in February, achieving 20 per cent of Rs 10,000-crore target for LRD set in November 2016 for the next 12-15 months.