AC Energy of Ayala group to invest $200M in 2013By Amy R. Remo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Conglomerate Ayala Corp., through its energy arm AC Energy Holdings Inc., plans to invest as much as $200 million (roughly P8.2 billion) this year in several key power projects.
This is in line with group’s plan “to invest $100 million to $200 million of equity every year” from 2012 to 2016, according to Eric T. Francia, managing director and group head for corporate strategy and development of Ayala.
The Ayala group plans to have an energy portfolio of 1,000 megawatts worth roughly $2.5 billion.
The Ayala group has investments in both conventional and renewable energy projects, which it is undertaking with various partners.
Conventional energy investments, Francia said, include the P12-billion, 135-megawatt coal facility in Batangas, which Ayala is jointly undertaking with Trans-Asia Oil and Energy Development Corp. through a vehicle company called South Luzon Thermal Energy Corp.
Ayala also has a 17.1-percent interest in GNPower Mariveles Coal Plant Ltd. Co., whose 600-MW coal facility in Bataan is set to start commercial operations by May this year.
“There is also a possible 600-MW expansion [by GNPower], and we would be interested to invest in this,” Francia told the Inquirer.
AC Energy, together with A Brown and Jin Navitas Resource Inc., is also set to begin the construction within the year of the P12.5-billion, 135-MW coal fired power plant in Iloilo. The partners target to start operating the plant by 2016.
Meanwhile, AC Energy Holdings also has interests in several renewable energy investments, including a 50-percent stake in NorthWind Power Development Corp., which owns and operates Southeast Asia’s first commercial wind facility, the 33-MW wind farm in Bangui, Ilocos Norte.
The Ayala group also has a joint venture with Mitsubishi Corp. of Japan for solar power projects through PhilNewEnergy Inc.
This vehicle company was said to be looking at three projects located in Alaminos, Pangasinan, where its planned facility can generate 40 MW to 50 MW; in Misamis Oriental, 30 MW to 40 MW; and in Davao, 40 MW to 50 MW.
The viability of the projects, however, is still being assessed, according to Francia.
Francia added that several mini-hydro projects are also expected to start construction within the year.
For its mini hydropower ventures, Ayala has partnered with Sta. Clara Power Corp., which holds several service contracts for hydropower projects.