A series of recent acquisitions and a strong financial position suggest a high-performing year for NTR.
In March, NTR announced that it has successfully secured the first of a number of project debt facilities for wind projects under its new €250m wind fund, with the financial close of a €21.5m project finance debt facility from Ulster Bank Ireland. The senior debt facility will be utilised to finance the construction of the Ora More wind farm, a 15MW wind farm based in Co. Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. With construction underway and employing approximately 50 people on site at present, Ora More is expected to be operational by the end of the year.
Speaking about the announcement NTR’s CFO, Marie Joyce, explained that this is an important milestone for the company as it is the first project financial close since the launch of its new wind fund. “We expect 2016 to be a very active year for us as we finance and build out a number of projects that we have recently acquired,” Joyce said.
The Ora More wind project will deploy six GE 2.5MW turbines and will generate enough electricity to power approximately 13,000 homes with clean energy.
NTR has entered into a power purchase agreement with SSE Airtricity, SSE plc’s retail energy brand operating in Ireland’s all-island energy market. SSE Airtricity will have the off-take of the renewable energy generated at Ora More for a period of 15 years covering existing Single Electricity Market (SEM) arrangements, as well as any new market design arrangements under the Integrated Single Electricity Market (I-SEM), due to come into operation by the end of 2017.
In February, when speaking about the successful and final close of its wind investment fund, chief executive Rosheen McGuckian said: “We are delighted to have attracted such calibre of institutional money into this, our first wind management fund. The line-up of institutional investment partners that have come into the fund is a validation of NTR’s track record and of our proposition to make long-term investments in attractive yielding renewable assets.”
Equally, NTR’s track record can be attributed to the leadership of McGuckian, who has played an instrumental role driving the firm forward.
At the end of last year, NTR reported a profit of €72.6m for the first half of the 2016 financial year as part of its final results announcement prior to a demerger of the Group. The profit is principally due to the gain achieved on the sale of the assets of Wind Capital Group completed in May, together with a foreign exchange gain on a deferred payment for the prior sale of a US wind project (Osage) and six weeks of trading by the US wind business up to May 2015.
Shareholders’ funds increased by 29% over the previous six months from €175.4m to €226.6m, and total assets as of September 30th 2015 stood at €280.8m comprising a mixture of cash and investments in European wind projects.
- Rosheen McGuckian was appointed CEO of NTR in April 2013.
- Since joining NTR in 2008, McGuckian has held a number of leadership positions in NTR including group business development director and CEO positions in solar development and waste management platforms within the group.
- Prior to joining NTR she was CEO of GE Money Ireland, the consumer finance division of General Electric, having joined GE in 2002.
- Prior to joining GE she led the business transformation initiative for Irish utility ESB Power Generation.
- McGuckian is a director of the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI), the Social Innovation Fund of Ireland, and is a member of the Advisory Board of Trinity College Dublin School of Engineering.
- She holds a PhD, MA and BSc.