Amandi Energy Limited announced last week that it has reached financial close and begun construction of the $552 million Amandi Energy Power Plant in Aboadze, Ghana.
The 200MW plant is a combined cycle, dual-fuel power project, the only large-scale baseload independent power generation project in Sub-Saharan Africa to achieve financial close to date in 2016, majority project owner, Endeavor Energy said in a statement.
Prior to financial close, Amandi Energy partnered with majority owner of the project Endeavor Energy (Endeavor), a Africa-focused independent power company backed by global private equity firm Denham Capital, and Aldwych International (Aldwych), a prominent developer, owner and operator of power generation projects in sub-Saharan Africa.
A spokesperson from Amandi Energy commented: “We started this journey four years ago with a strong belief in the Ghanaian power sector and a commitment to contribute to its growth and success, and have been able to build a strong management team focused on delivering this complex transaction.”
Helen Tarnoy, Managing Director of Aldwych, said: “Aldwych International acted as co-developer and technical partner through 2.5 years of development and we are delighted to see the successful conclusion of this effort.”
Harith CEO and Chairman of Aldwych, Tshepo Mahloele, further added: “The financial close of the Amandi Project represents a critical moment in addressing Africa’s growing demand for reliable power infrastructure and the persistent lack of properly packaged, bankable projects in the energy space. The project will assist Ghana by realising its developmental objectives and unleashing the country’s industrial potential.”
According to the statement, once constructed, the plant will be one of the most efficient power plants in the country and will produce more than 1,600 GWh per year, powering up to one million Ghanaian households.
The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) is the primary off-taker having signed a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement.
The plant will be initially fuelled by light crude oil, but is expected to switch to indigenous gas from Ghana’s offshore Sankofa natural gas field once available.
The Amandi Project will be fully constructed within 28 months and is scheduled to come online in April 2019.
The $552 million investment required for the Amandi Project comprises $134 million in equity from the sponsor group, which includes Endeavor, AFG, Aldwych, Pan African Infrastructure Development Fund 2 managed by Harith General Partners (PAIDF2), and ARM-Harith Infrastructure Fund (ARMHIF).
The $418 million in debt financing is provided by a group of lenders, including the U.S. Government’s development finance institution Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), which will provide a $250 million loan, as well as CDC Group plc, which will provide an $83 million loan, Nedbank Limited and Rand Merchant Bank.
“Additional power is critical to Ghana as it seeks to meet ever increasing demand and OPIC is proud that this project will help support that,” said Elizabeth L. Littlefield, OPIC President and CEO.
“OPIC’s financing and reinsurance will enable the construction of a combined cycle gas turbine power plant that, not only will meet the energy demands, but looks to further develop its economy by creating jobs for local Ghanaians.”
Sean Long, CEO of Endeavor, added: “Ghana embarked on a mission to strengthen its power sector that has now created an opportune time for international investing.
“We are very pleased to be working with Ghana’s government and the ECG, as well as the Amandi Founder Group and Aldwych, to realise this project. We’re also proud of the Denham Capital and Endeavor teams for successfully working with our committed partners to achieve financial close on the required $418 million of debt financing for the Amandi Project while at the same time continuing to execute on other important power projects across the continent.”
Holger Rothenbusch, CDC’s Managing Director, Debt, concluded: “We are very pleased to be part of this project which is our largest debt commitment in Africa to date and has the potential to create thousands of direct and indirect jobs in the region, not to mention boosting existing businesses through more consistent access to power.”