Philippines’ AC Energy invests in Australia’s renewable energy market

16 Jul 2018

AC Energy has entered into a joint venture with UPC Renewables, a global renewable energy developer, and invested in Australia’s energy market.

AC Energy is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Philippines-based conglomerate Ayala Corporation. The company is investing A$40 million (US$30 million) for 50% ownership in UPC’s Australian business, UPC Renewables Australia, and is also providing a US$200 million facility to fund project equity.

UPC Renewables Australia is developing the 1,000MW Robbins Island and Jims Plain projects in North West Tasmania, and the 600MW New England Solar Farm located near Uralla in NSW. UPC Renewables Australia is also developing projects that are generating a total of 3,000MWs across NSW, Tasmania and Victoria.

In the Philippine Star, UPC Renewables Australia Chief Executive Anton Rohner says AC Energy’s investment will accelerate UPC’s project development in Australia.

‘We are making progress on the Robbins Island and Jims Plain project in North West Tasmania and we endorse the [Australian] Prime Minister’s recent comment about how wind and hydro are highly complementary,’ says Rohner. ‘We expect our projects in North West Tasmania to have capacity factors in the order of 50% with the turbines producing power nearly 95% of the time.’

Eric Francia, AC Energy President and CEO, adds his company is excited to invest in UPC Renewables Australia as it complements AC Energy’s goal to exceed 5,000MW by 2025.

‘The UPC Renewables Australia platform is focused on large scale projects and is managed by a high-quality management team,’ he says.

AC Energy is one of the Philippines’ fastest growing energy companies with over US$1 billion of invested and committed equity in renewable and thermal energy in the Philippines and around the Asia-Pacific region.

Ayala Corporation is the Philippines’ oldest conglomerate, with a history reaching back to 1834. As at 2017 its reported market capitalisation was US$10.7 billion. Ayala Corporation has previously invested in Australia through its Manila Water division, which in 2010 was part of the consortium that acquired United Utilities Australia and its affiliates for A$225 million.

In March 2018 at the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit in Sydney, Mr Jaime Zobel de Ayala, Group CEO, co-chaired the Advanced Manufacturing CEO Roundtable.