PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 10:25 PM IST
Amplus Energy Solutions Pvt. Ltd is in talks to acquire Goldman Sachs-backed ReNew Power’s rooftop solar portfolio of 140 megawatts (MW), said two people familiar with the matter on condition of anonymity.
The proposed deal by Amplus, owned by Malaysia’s state-run oil and gas firm, Petroliam Nasional Bhd, could rank among the largest so far in India’s solar rooftop space, underscoring growing consolidation in the commercial and industrial (C&I) segment.
“We keep on exploring consolidation opportunities in the C&I space,” said Sanjeev Aggarwal, founder and managing director of Amplus. He declined to comment on the deal with ReNew Power.
“We believe that we can provide best value to the customers, given our long-term strategic focus on operational excellence” Aggarwal said.
ReNew Power founder and chairman and managing director Sumant Sinha declined to comment.
Considering the regulatory risks over green energy contracts and their enforcement in Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Punjab, investors are increasingly looking at C&I space as it is generally insulated from risks such as power procurement curtailment and tariff-shopping by state-owned distribution companies (discoms).
Firms such as Amplus, Royal Dutch Shell-backed Cleantech Solar Energy, Netherlands Development Finance Co.-backed Avaada Energy Pvt. Ltd and Warburg Pincus-backed CleanMax Solar supply power to third-party as well as captive consumers in India who prefer such suppliers instead of depending on a more expensive electricity grid.
The talks with Amplus come in the backdrop of ReNew Power announcing a merger with Nasdaq-listed special purpose acquisition firm RMG Acquisition Corp. II on Wednesday, at an enterprise value of about $8 billion. The new entity, ReNew Energy Global Plc, will be listed on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol ‘RNW’, at an equity value of $4.4 billion. ReNew Power may also explore an India listing, Mint reported on Friday.
ReNew Power generates 5.73 gigawatts (GW) of electricity through solar and wind assets and has another 4.41GW under development across India.
Amplus has an 800MW solar portfolio. Petronas has a growing ambition around India’s green economy and is also looking to buy about 10% stake in Tata Power Renewable Energy Ltd, in addition to investing in Tata Power’s renewable energy infrastructure investment trust (InvIT).
India has been expanding its clean energy capacity at low tariffs and has a target of achieving 450GW renewable energy capacity by 2030.
The government, on its part, is also trying to promote rooftop solar, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling for each state to have at least one “solar city” whose electricity needs would be met entirely through rooftop solar power. “So far, we have installed around 4GW rooftop solar energy and about 2.5GW will be added soon. In the next one and a half years, 40GW of solar energy is targeted to be generated only by rooftop solar projects,” Prime Minister Modi said on Wednesday.