TNB acquires UK wind farm firm


TENAGA Nasional Bhd’s (TNB) wholly-owned subsidiary, Vantage RE Ltd, has signed a share purchase agreement to acquire a 49% stake in an offshore wind farm company, Blyth Offshore Demonstrator Ltd (BODL) from EDF Renewables (EDFR), a subsidiary of the French utility company, Électricité de France (EDF). 

Vantage RE was launched on July 1, 2021, to own, operate and manage TNB’s portfolio of renewable energy (RE) assets in Europe. 

In a statement yesterday, the group said the acquisition marks TNB’s maiden entry into the international offshore wind market as BODL currently owns offshore wind assets off the coast of Blyth in Northumberland, England. 

The assets include five turbines with a total installed capacity of 41.5 megawatt (MW) (Blyth 1) and further development rights for a floating offshore wind project of up to 58.4MW (Blyth 2) located off the Northumberland coast. 

The five 8.3MW turbines of Blyth 1 are installed with gravity-based foundations, which use a concrete load to keep the turbines securely in place without penetrating the seabed. 

The wind farm has been in operation since 2017 under the renewable obligation certificates subsidy regime that is expected to provide stable revenues. 

Blyth 2 is an innovative floating offshore wind project currently in the early stage of development. 

“This landmark acquisition is one of the planned strategic acquisitions for TNB to accelerate its journey in delivering on its global environmental, social and governance vision,” said TNB’s president and CEO Datuk Baharin Din (picture). 

“We have recently announced our sustainability pathway, a blueprint with an aspiration to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The Pathway is underpinned by our commitment to reduce 35% of TNB’s emissions intensity as well as 50% of our coal generation capacity by 2035,” he added. 

He said TNB aims to grow its RE capacity to 8,300MW by 2025. 

“We believe this partnership will give us an edge in an increasingly competitive industry as we look to rapidly scale up our global RE portfolio and strengthen our position in the future energy landscape,” he said. 

He further noted that the strategic partnership would allow the group to fully benefit from EDFR’s extensive experience in the offshore wind sector across TNB’s focus markets, mainly UK, Europe and South-East Asia. 

“It not only sets the pace for Vantage RE to grow in the UK and Europe, but also provides a solid pathway for TNB to accelerate its ambition to be a leading provider of sustainable energy solutions.” 

Involvement in the UK offshore wind sector will allow TNB to capitalise on the vast experience of the existing Vantage RE management, broaden its technology know-how and provide further capability and talent development within the group. 

EDF Group senior executive VP (renewable energies), chairman and CEO of EDFR Bruno Bensasson said as an international low carbon energy leader, EDF Group is committed to contribute to the sector technological evolution and competitiveness. 

“We are very pleased to seal this partnership with TNB on Blyth, a UK demonstrator site dedicated to offshore wind energy solutions. TNB and EDF share the same ambition to contribute to a low carbon society. Therefore, beyond this first partnership, we envisage further cooperation on low carbon electricity generation in the European continent, as Blyth, and in Asia,” Bensasson said. 

TNB has been investing in the UK’s solar and wind sectors since 2017 and with the latest addition, TNB will be operating close to 450MW of RE investments (wind and solar farms) in the country.