BlackRock makes first investment in UK wind parks

Two onshore facilities bought for £32.1m, more could follow under deal.

BlackRock, the US asset manager and the world’s largest funds house, has made its first investment in UK wind parks, with one of its funds buying two facilities from project developer Renewable Energy Generation (REG) for £32.1m (€37.6m). Citing compliance issues, BlackRock declined to say which of its funds had bought the two parks, known as Sancton Hill (Yorkshire) and South Sharpley (County Durham). They have a combined capacity of 16 MW. The deal is part of a broader agreement between the two whereby BlackRock may acquire more UK wind parks developed by REG in the future. REG said it expected to sell a third 4MW facility to BlackRock by the spring.
The agreement also provides for REG to manage onshore wind parks it has sold to BlackRock, starting with Sancton Hill and South Sharpley. Jersey-based REGhas so far developed twelve onshore parks with a total capacity of 57MW. Another two are under construction, and REG aims to develop another 17 parks.
“Our partnership with REG creates an exciting investment opportunity for BlackRock’s clients. We look forward to working together with such a high quality developer in the UK onshore wind sector,” said Jim Barry, head of BlackRock’s renewable energy investment unit. That unit team was created in late February 2011, when Barry, the former CEO of renewable energy investor NTR Plc, and ten of his NTR colleagues joined BlackRock. Barry reports to Matt Botein, who heads BlackRock’s alternative strategies division in New York. Botein’s division manages hedge funds, real estate funds and private equity funds.

Link to REG’s UK wind parks