Debt-laden Panda Green sells 82.5 MW UK portfolio

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Hong Kong solar developer Panda Green has been forced to sell off an 82.5 MW portfolio of solar projects in the U.K. in order to meet a debt repayment that is due by the end of next month.

The developer has to find HK$1 billion of a debt pile that was reported to stand at some RMB20.8 billion (HK$24.4 billion) at the end of last June.

With shareholders yesterday agreeing to a fundraising that is expected to bring in around HK$996 million by issuing stock equivalent to 68% of the current business, the £34 million (HK$353 million) sale of the UK business will easily account for the remainder of the short-term funding requirements and help the former United PV Group with its larger borrowings.

Panda Green acquired Luxembourg-registered Notus Investments 2 and its six-project U.K. portfolio in January 2017. The business was today sold to Dublin and London-based renewable energy investment fund Greencoat Solar Assets II Ltd.

The sale price was around £34 million, with £170,000 held back for two years in case of any unforseen historic debts associated with the U.K. projects.

Announcing the sale to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange this morning, Panda Green stated the proceeds would be used “for repayment of indebtedness owed by the group and general working capital” and added, the sale “will be a good opportunity for the group to … improve the liquidity and deleveraging of the group”.