Gamesa creates UK jobs in offshore wind energy business
The United Kingdom will someday be considered home for Gamesa’s global offshore wind energy business. The Spanish world leader will invest approximately 15 million euro in the UK-based center by the year 2014.
Gamesa’s offshore industrial plan, to be implemented in the UK in 2011, involves the development of a central location for offshore technology and the construction of one turbine blade manufacturing plant. The company plans to conduct its offshore business port logistics and turbine operation and maintenance services from various ports throughout the UK.
Additionally, Gamesa plans to base its global headquarters of its offshore division in London. The London location will be responsible for sales, project management, finance and administration for the offshore business.
Prime Ministry, Mr. David Cameron, commented, "I want us to be a world leader in offshore wind energy. That's why we're committing public money to ensure we have the infrastructure that attracts major manufacturers to come here and build their offshore wind turbines. The commitment shown by companies like Gamesa who want to come to the UK and invest is good news for jobs and growth and good news our clean energy future. This announcement is very welcome indeed."
“The United Kingdom’s resolute decision to enact an ambitious offshore plan, along with the country's support for foreign investment and the availability of large ports - which are essential in this business - convinced us to make the decision to base the global headquarters of our offshore activity in the UK. This will involve sizeable investments in coming years and will generate local, skilled and sustainable jobs", said Gamesa Chairman Jorge Calvet.
Gamesa anticipates significant growth for its offshore wind energy business, generating over 1,000 jobs for the construction and development of the UK center. An additional 800 jobs are expected to be created indirectly at the company’s vendors and suppliers.
USS pension fund buys 50% stake in Bruc Energy
The Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) private pension fund has taken a 50% stake in Bruc Energy, a Spain and Portugal renewables-focussed investment vehicle created by OPTrust and Spanish businessman, Juan Béjar.
In the transaction arranged by USS Investment Management, the wholly-owned subsidiary and principal investment manager and advisor to the Scheme, USS has invested €225M (c.£200m) in return for the stake in a major pipeline of 4,000MW of PV farms. Bruc Energy has an ambitious growth plan that goes beyond this to invest in other green energies, such as wind power.
USS, which announced two weeks ago its aim to be net zero by 2050, already has a strong relationship with both OPTrust and Juan Bejar through Globalvia, a specialist infrastructure platform focussed on managing rail and highways assets around the world.
Spain’s sun-drenched climate and national target to reach 100% renewable-based generation by 2050 make it an attractive place to invest in solar energy. In addition, the decades long lifespan of solar PV panels make them well-suited to USS in helping pay members’ pensions long into the future.
USS Investment Management CEO, Simon Pilcher, said: “We are delighted to be committing further finance to renewables and particularly to a major Spanish solar platform like this. We have already invested or committed around £1 billion to renewable energy and demand for this will only increase as more and more countries transition to lower carbon. We know that our members care very much about climate change and ESG and we are convinced that USS playing its part in supporting the transition to a low carbon economy makes good financial sense, too. This announcement closely follows on from our stated ambition to become Net Zero by 2050 so this transaction and others like it will be a key plank of our strategy going forward.”
Gavin Merchant, Co-Head of Direct Equity, said: “We have worked alongside OPTrust and Juan Béjar for many years and are delighted to be making this investment. The long-term nature of solar and the steady returns make renewables attractive to a pension scheme needing to pay pensions for years to come.”
OPTrust’s Morgan McCormick, Managing Director, Private Markets Group UK said: “We are excited to have USS join Bruc Energy building on our strong existing relationship. Their investment will help Bruc become one of the leading renewable energy platforms in Spain. At OPTrust, we believe that investing in renewable energy helps transitions the world to a more sustainable economy. In doing so, we can continue to deliver on our mission of paying pensions today and preserving pensions for tomorrow.”
Béjar said the partnership is a key step to establishing Bruc as one of the more dynamic players in the renewables industry in Spain, because it ensures access to the funds to develop our current portfolio. "All three shareholders of Bruc Energy share a long-term vision, but also the ambition and the social responsibility to counter the effects of climate change in the short-term," he said.
Following the transaction, which remains subject to conditions, including regulatory approval, Bruc Energy will be owned 50% by USS and BROP, a vehicle owned by OPTrust and Béjar. The transaction was advised by Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), Greenhill and Nomura. Juan Béjar will be the president of Bruc Energy and Luis Venero the CEO.