Exclusive-French solar firm Reden up for sale in potential 2 billion euro deal -sources

·2-min read

By Isla Binnie and Arno Schuetze

(Reuters) -Private equity firms Eurazeo and Infravia are launching an auction for Reden in a deal that could value the French solar group at up to 2 billion euros ($2.4 billion), three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Investors are clamouring for businesses that can help the world's economies shift away from fossil fuels and stave off potentially catastrophic climate change.

Citi and Nomura Greentech have been given a mandate to capitalise on this appetite and sell the business, the sources familiar with the matter said on condition of anonymity.

In response to a question from Reuters, a representative for Reden said its shareholders were assessing their strategic options regarding their ownership in Reden, and had hired Citi and Nomura.

Eurazeo, Infravia and Citi declined to comment. Nomura did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The global carbon-cutting drive has spawned ambitious targets to build new renewable power plants and storage that will require the European Union alone to spend $585 billion by 2030, Wood Mackenzie analysts have said.

Founded in 2008 in Roquefort, southern France, Reden develops, builds and operates photovoltaic solar plants in France, Portugal, Spain, Puerto Rico, Chile and Mexico.

It also develops and manufactures photovoltaic modules and had 615 megawatts (MW) of installed capacity as of May 2021, according to an information sheet sent to potential investors, and seen by Reuters.

Infravia and Eurazeo bought their respective 53% and 47% stakes in 2017. Infrastructure investors and pension funds would be the most likely candidates to take Reden off their hands, one of the sources said.

The renewable sector is also attracting increasing attention from oil and gas producers and fossil-focused utilities facing shareholder pressure to limit their impact on the climate.

Reden raked in 105 million euros in core earnings in 2020 and the company's equity value is 250 million euros, according to the information sheet.

($1 = 0.8216 euros)

(Reporting by Isla Binnie; Editing by Steve Orlofsky and Marguerita Choy)