Razon pays P126 M for Ayala power barge acquisition

Razon-led Prime Strategic Holdings Inc., via its subsidiary MORE Power Barge Inc. (MPBI), had paid P126 million in cash to ACEN Corporation of the Ayala group for the acquisition of the latter’s 32-megawatt Power Barge 101 in Iloilo.

According to the Ayala energy firm, the payment was turned over by Prime Strategic Holdings on January 21, following the execution of the deed of absolute sale and assignment by the parties-in-interest.

“The transaction involves all of MPBI’s rights, title and interests in Power Barge 101; and, to the extent permitted by law, all permits and licenses required to own, operate, and maintain the power barge,” ACEN has noted in its disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange.

The Ayala energy firm said that with the recent divestment of its Power Barge 101, “the company will no longer have operating power barges,” and that has been part of its well calculated shift into renewable energy investments.

“The company will reinvest the proceeds from the sale in its renewable energy projects,” ACEN stated, although it has not specified yet which ventures such would be funneled into.

The Ayala firm is bent on concretizing its RE investment buildup of 5,000MW until year 2025 in the Philippines and its other key markets in the Asian region. This will mainly consist of solar and wind farm projects, plus innovative technologies like battery energy storage system (BESS) and hydrogen.

For the Razon group, it is one of the most aggressive players in the power industry. It is just expanding its power generation portfolio, but also its business reach in the power distribution segment of the restructured electricity sector.

The power barge asset purchase from Ayala, in particular, will strategically complement the power distribution service of MORE Electric and Power Corporation because that facility could serve as an added source for its power supply, especially for peaking capacity in the summer months.

In Luzon, its Prime Infrastructure Holdings is likewise delving into various solar farm developments – including acquisitions from the generating facilities of Solar Philippines.

Another Razon-led firm Prime Infrastructure Capital Inc., in a tie-up with Solar Philippines, had lodged an unsolicited proposal with Manila Electric Company (Meralco) for aggregate 850-MW solar projects to be developed in various parts of Luzon.

That project proposal had been subjected to a competitive tender by Meralco. It will be known by March 7 this year if the final project-sponsor will still be the Razon-Leviste tandem or there would be challengers with better offer.