Sonnedix Solar Consortium Closes 86 MW Solar PV Power Plant in South Africa Government Tender

01 January 2015

1st of January 2015 – For immediate release

On December 11, 2014, a consortium led by global solar independent power producer (IPP) Sonnedix closed all main project contracts for a large-scale solar photovoltaic power project in the Northern Cape of South Africa with a total generation capacity of 86 megawatts, including, financing facilities agreements with Nedbank and Standard Bank, engineering procurement and construction (EPC) arrangements with Juwi Renewable Energies (Pty) Ltd, and a power purchase agreement with Eskom, the South African electricity public utility. Sonnedix undertook this project with Mulilo, a major South African renewable energy developer, as a minority partner. The commencement of construction is scheduled for the first quarter of 2015.

The project was selected by the Department of Energy of South Africa under the third bidding window of the national Renewable Energy Procurement Program in October 2013.

Commenting on the closing, Franck Constant, President of Sonnedix said “This first closing in South Africa is a considerable milestone for our company. It confirms the growth strategy and added value of Sonnedix in new markets where clean renewable electricity is in high demand and cost effective compared to conventional power. Through this achievement, we are also pleased to reiterate our enthusiasm and dedication to make things happen as a leading global solar IPP for the Government of South Africa, and increasing our presence in the country’s power supply industry for years to come.”

The Lenders for the Project have also shown an outstanding commitment to the Project and the growth of renewables in South Africa.  “Together with Standard Bank and our clients, Sonnedix and Mulilo,” said Sakkie Leimecke Head of Energy at Nedbank Capital, “we are contributing to the vision of a South Africa which through the closure of this transaction will bring significant green power to the grid in record time.” Rentia van Tonder, Head of Renewables for Standard Bank, confirmed “The buy-in by banks to the entire REIPP programme demonstrates the understanding by the country’s financial institutions that innovative funding models can have a profound and positive influence on environmental sustainability.”

“Our lenders have shown an outstanding level of commitment in our project. We have been delighted to work through the closing process with Mulilo, our South African partner. We also want to thank all the advisers involved in this development. We are looking forward to starting the construction of the project, and getting involved in other high quality projects of this type in the future.” according to Olivier Renon, Sonnedix South Africa Country Manager.

Sonnedix is an Independent Solar Power Producer (IPP) with a proven track record in delivering high performance cost competitive solar photovoltaic plants to the market. Sonnedix develops, builds, owns and operates solar power plants globally. Sonnedix currently owns over 100 megawatts (MW) photovoltaic (PV) power plants in operation as well a several hundred MW in development pipeline in Italy, France, Spain, US/Puerto Rico, Thailand, Chile, South Africa and Japan. For more information about Sonnedix, please visit  www.sonnnedix.com

Nedbank Group is one of SA’s four largest banking groups by assets and deposits, with Nedbank Ltd our principal banking subsidiary. We are a JSE Top 40 company with our ordinary shares listed on the JSE since 1969 and on the Namibian Stock Exchange since 2007. Our market capitalisation was R107bn at 31 December 2013. Old Mutual plc is our majority shareholder, owning 52% of Nedbank Group. For further information go to www.nedbankgroup.co.za

Standard Bank South Africa is the largest operating entity of Standard Bank Group, Africa’s largest bank by assets. Standard Bank Group had total assets of R1 694 billion (about USD162 billion) at 31 December 2013, while its market capitalisation was R209.4 billion (about USD20 billion). In South Africa, Standard Bank provides the full spectrum of financial services. It’s Corporate and Investment Banking division serves a wide range of requirements for banking, finance, trading, investment, risk management and advisory services. Corporate and Investment Banking division delivers this comprehensive range of products and services relating to: investment banking; global markets; and global transactional products and services. Standard Bank’s corporate and investment banking expertise is focused on industry sectors that are most relevant to emerging markets. It has strong offerings in mining and metals; oil, gas and renewables; power and infrastructure; agribusiness; telecommunications and media; and financial institutions. Standard Bank’s personal and business banking products include mortgage lending, instalment sale and finance leases, card products, transaction and lending products, and bank assurance. For further information go to www.standardbank.co.za

I’d put my money on the Sun and Solar Energy, what a source of Power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out, before we tackle that.

Thomas Edison in conversation with Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone, 1931