€1.2bn wind deal

Iberian private equity firm Magnum Capital led a group of investors in the buyout of Portugal’s largest wind power business, Enersis, from Australian investment company Babcock Brown for €1.2bn.

The private equity firm stated it was the largest deal in the European wind sector ever completed by a private equity firm. Magnum provided 65% of the financing for the purchase and raised the rest through local institutional investors including Espirito Santo Capital, a part of Banco Espirito Santo bank, as well as a Nordic clean energy private equity fund, Fjord Capital.

Portugal and Spain have been prominent in wind power development in recent years and lay claim to the two largest listed wind energy companies Iberdrola Renovables and EDP Renewables. Spain’s Gamesa is a leading producer of wind power turbines.

Enersis accounts for 25% of installed wind power capacity in Portugal. The business is forecast to post sales of €120m in 2008.