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Augment Infrastructure to acquire Warburg Pincus's, IFC’s majority stake in CleanMax for Rs1,650 crore

CleanMax’s portfolio includes 380MW of large-scale solar farms in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu that supply electricity to corporate customers and 220MW of solar rooftop projects. (Photo: Reuters)Premium
CleanMax’s portfolio includes 380MW of large-scale solar farms in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu that supply electricity to corporate customers and 220MW of solar rooftop projects. (Photo: Reuters)

In July 2017, CleanMax said it has secured equity financing of as much as $100 million from Warburg Pincus. The other investor in the firm is UKCI, a joint venture between Green Investment Group and the UK government’s department for business, energy and industrial strategy

NEW DELHI : US investment firm Augment Infrastructure will acquire Warburg Pincus LLC’s and International Finance Corp.’s majority stake in rooftop solar power producer CleanMax Enviro Energy Solutions Pvt. Ltd for 1,650 crore. The deal value includes new investments in Mumbai-based CleanMax.

“UK Climate Investments (UKCI) will continue as an investor and board member," the firms said in a joint statement on Thursday.

Rothschild & Co. was the sales adviser. Mint had reported on 25 October about Warburg Pincus exploring the stake sale. Singaporean conglomerate Keppel Corp. was among the suitors for Warburg Pincus’ majority stake, as reported by Mint earlier.

The transaction is a reaffirmation of growing consolidation in the commercial and industrial (C&I) segment and comes amid a growing focus on environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing.

Considering the regulatory risks over green energy contracts and their enforcement in several states, investors are increasingly looking at the C&I space as it is generally insulated from risks such as power procurement curtailment and tariff-shopping by state-run distribution companies.

“This is Augment Infrastructure’s first investment in an Indian C&I renewable energy company," Darius Lilaoonwala, managing partner, Augment Infrastructure, said in the statement.

In July 2017, CleanMax said it had secured equity financing of as much as $100 million from Warburg Pincus. The other investor in the firm is UKCI, a joint venture between Green Investment Group and the UK government’s department for business, energy and industrial strategy. UKCI is managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets.

“We are happy to note that both global investors will secure an exit, which is always a responsibility of the management team to deliver upon. I am also delighted to note that over 150 CleanMax colleagues, present and past, are securing a part exit on their ESOPs," Kuldeep Jain, founder and managing director of CleanMax, said in the statement.

The firm’s operating capacity has jumped from 24MW in 2015-16 to around 750MW.

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