CESA sold for ?1.37bn

Mercapital and Bridgepoint have sold CESA, a Spanish wind farm operator, to ACCIONA, the construction and energy group, for a total of €1.37bn.

The value includes €973m for 93.1% of CESA’s equity along with €397m of debt, and the acquisition gives ACCIONA an 18% share of the Spanish market.

Bridgepoint is estimated to have made a 6x return from the sale, having invested €45m for a 23.75% stake back in 2004 – this stake is now said to be worth €260m. Mercapital had a 30% stake. Gala Capital, a Ukraine-based fund, which was set up by financier George Soros, acquired 7.5% of CESA for €24m in May 2005.

Following the acquisition of CESA, ACCIONA now has 536 MW of attributable installed capacity: 496 MW in Spain and 40 MW in other countries (Italy and Greece). The operating wind farms are an average of four years old and can generate cash flow for over 16 years. Attributable capacity currently under construction in Spain amounts to 138 MW, which will be completely operational by the end of this year.

CESA plans to develop 878 MW (attributable) in Spain and abroad in 2006-09: 563 MW in eight Spanish regions, and 315 MW in Italy, Greece, Portugal and Hungary. CESA also has a project portfolio of over 3,400 MW (attributable), of which 2,050 MW relate to projects in Spain and 1,350 MW to projects outside Spain, which will be developed as from 2010.