Bluefield Solar Eyes £150 Million IPO

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Bluefield IPO to Be the Second Green Energy Fund Flotation in London This Year

by Alice Young

KD501Bluefield Solar Income Fund Limited, an investment fund focussed on solar power, plans to raise £150 million in a London IPO. The Bluefield IPO will be the second flotation of a green energy find on the London Stock Exchange this year following the IPO of Greencoat UK Wind (LON:UKW).

Bluefield Solar Plans London IPO

On Wednesday, May 29, London-based Bluefield Solar announced that it intended to launch an initial public offering on the LSE’s main market. The fund, which is focussing on large-scale agricultural and industrial solar assets, said in a press release that it was seeking to raise £150 million by way of a placing and an offer for subscription of ordinary shares. Bluefield expects its shares to start trading in July.

One of the fund’s cornerstone investors will be Vestra Wealth LLP which has committed to subscribe for no less than 15 million ordinary shares. Numis Securities is acting as broker and financial adviser to Bluefield in relation to the London IPO. The fund will also be advised by Bluefield Partners.

The fund plans to invest the proceeds from the IPO in UK-based agricultural and industrial solar energy assets. “Solar energy should play an important part in the UK’s energy mix going forward,” John Rennocks, the proposed Non-Executive Chairman of the fund, said in the press release. On Wednesday, the Financial Times quoted James Armstrong, a managing partner in Bluefield Partners, as saying that large-scale solar energy was “poised to become a major investment theme in the UK”.

Bluefield Solar was founded by former partners of Foresight Group, a large renewable technology investor. Jon Moulton, the private equity tycoon and chairman of investment company Better Capital (LON:BCAP), sits on its investment committee.

Green Energy IPOs

The Bluefield IPO announcement came two months after the floatation of Greencoat UK Wind (LON:UKW), a wind energy investment fund managed by UK-based infrastructure fund Greencoat Capital, which raised £260 million in March through a London IPO. Greencoat owns stakes in onshore and offshore wind developments.

UK government support for clean energy has offered an incentive to renewable energy producers to seek London listing. Electricity suppliers have been encouraged to increase the share of renewables such as solar and wind power in the electricity mix they sell to customers.

The Renewables Infrastructure Group (TRIG) backed by Renewable Energy Systems is reportedly considering a flotation, hoping to raise £300 million for its portfolio of 18 wind farms and solar parks in Britain, Ireland and France.

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