Allianz snaps up 100 MW UK solar portfolio from BayWa r.e.

The U.K.'s terrain has been a welcome host of solar in recent years, and solar funds are now performing well.

The renewable energy fund of Allianz Global Investors – the global investment manager arm of the insurance giant – has finalized the purchase of its third renewable energy investment with the acquisition of 100 MW of solar PV capacity in the U.K.

The Allianz Renewable Fund 2 (AREF2) made its first foray into solar with the purchase, buying three large-scale solar farms from German clean energy developer BayWa r.e. on January 26 for an undisclosed sum.

Comprised in the purchase was the 45 MW Vine Farm solar park in the east of England, as well as the Rose & Crown solar park – also in the east of England – and the Mount Farm solar park, located in the West Midlands.

As part of the sale agreement, BayWa r.e. will retain commercial and technical business operations duties for the portfolio, which was completed under the U.K.’s Renewable Obligation Certificate (ROC) scheme at a rate of 1.3 ROC.

For AREF2, this solar purchase diversifies its clean energy portfolio, which already includes two wind farms bought in Germany and Sweden as part of the fund’s €350 million investment kitty. In all, Allianz Global Investors hopes to manage some €1.6 billion worth of renewable energy and infrastructure projects as part of its wider infrastructure objectives.

On the solar front, this acquisition is seen as a shot of confidence for the British PV industry, which has suffered a series of injurious setbacks since the Conservative government came to power in May 2015.

“Regardless of any upcoming changes to the political fabric [in the U.K.], we firmly believe in the long-term attractiveness of the British solar market,” said Allianz Global Investors’ CIO for infrastructure equity Armin Sandhövel. “The purchase of these three solar parks is a perfect way to regionally diversify the AREF2 portfolio.”