Home / Industry / Energy /  Continuum sale gathers pace; three suitors sign NDAs

NEW DELHI : Global oil major BP Plc, Norway’s state-run electricity firm Statkraft, and New York-based I Squared Capital are in the fray to buy Continuum Green Energy (India) Pvt. Ltd, two people aware of the development said. The companies have also signed non-disclosure agreements (NDA) for the transaction, which may rank among the largest clean energy transactions in India.

Citibank and Deutsche Bank are running the sale process for Continuum, and a deal is likely at an equity value of around $600 million, the people cited above said on the condition of anonymity.

US investment bank Morgan Stanley has around 83% stake in the clean energy platform, which has 1.3 GW of operational and nearly operational projects, and an additional 1.17 GW of near-term construction portfolio through utility scale and commercial and industrial segment projects.

In 2012, North Haven Infrastructure Partners, a global infrastructure fund managed by Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners, invested $212.03 million in Continuum, founded by Arvind Bansal and Vikash Saraf in 2009.

“Morgan Stanley and promoters are looking to exit this time, and it will be a 100% stake sale," said one of the two people cited above, requesting anonymity.

A Deutsche Bank spokesperson declined comment. Continuum’s chief executive officer Arvind Bansal in a text message said, “We respectfully decline to comment on market speculation."

A Statkraft spokesperson said, “We as a matter of principle don’t comment on rumours on possible transactions in the market."

Queries emailed to the spokespersons of BP Plc, Everstone Capital, I Squared Capital, Morgan Stanley, Lightsource BP, and Citibank remained unanswered till press time.

BP Plc’s interest in Continuum comes after large global rivals such as Shell Plc, French energy major Total and Thailand’s PTT Group have already established a significant presence in India’s green energy space.

The Continuum stake sale plans have been on for some time now, and Statkraft and US-based renewable energy producer SunEdison Inc. have previously tried to acquire the company. In 2015, SunEdison Inc., then the world’s largest renewable energy company, entered into an agreement to acquire Continuum Wind. The transaction, however, was called off later.

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Utpal Bhaskar

"Utpal Bhaskar leads Mint's policy and economy coverage. He is part of Mint’s launch team, which he joined as a staff writer in 2006. Widely cited by authors and think-tanks, he has reported extensively on the intersection of India’s policy, polity and corporate space.
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