CIPREL IV – August 21, 2013

Cote d’Ivoire’s CIPREL secures over $400m for expansion

CIPREL, a subsidiary of Emerging Capital Partners’ portfolio company eranove, has secured €320m ($428.3m) of debt funding to complete its gas and steam turbine expansion plans in Cote d’Ivoire.

In the latest tranche of funding, which totalled €200m ($267.7m), the International Finance Corporation (IFC) has provided a €100m ($133.8m) loan, while PROPARCO and the African Development Bank (AfDB) have contributed a €50m ($66.9m) loan each.

Marc Alberola, CEO of eranove, which owns 83% of CIPREL, said that CIPREL has become a “reference for technical, operational and financial excellence not only in Cote d’Ivoire but in Africa”.

“We are extremely pleased to have been able to sign the financing with such a committed group of financiers,” he said.

Yolande Duhem, IFC Director for West and Central Africa, said: “We are pleased to continue our support to CIPREL, a company that is taking important steps to help address the electricity needs of the country and the region.”

The Ivorian electricity production company CIPREL is currently undertaking a major expansion plan involving an additional 111 MW gas turbine and the conversion to combined cycle of its two latest gas turbines.

This latest funding will be used specifically to fund an expansion project that will use heat recovery technology, converting part of the existing CIPREL gas turbines into combined cycle operation, and add 111 MW of installed capacity via a steam turbine.

Vincent Le Guennou, co-CEO of ECP and chairman of eranove, said that additional financing marks a critical milestone for both CIPREL and Côte d’Ivoire.

“CIPREL is on the path to becoming one of the largest independent power producers in the region, with over half a billion US dollars of capital under deployment, and strong operational performance,” he said.

“As a result of this expansion project, CIPREL will have increased capacity by 333MW, enabling it to deliver affordable additional energy to Ivoirians, while simultaneously optimizing natural gas resources,” he added.

As a result of the expansion, the total installed capacity of CIPREL will increase to 543 MW – cementing its position as the largest power plant in Côte d’Ivoire and making it one of the most important power plants in the region.

The additional power will improve access to electricity for Ivoirians, help meet increasing demand for electricity and sustain Côte d’Ivoire’s economic growth, and enable the country to meet its export objectives to neighbouring countries in the sub-region.

Bernard Kouassi N’Guessan, CIPREL’s CEO, said: “With this expansion, CIPREL will continue to provide Cote d’Ivoire with what it needs most after a difficult few years, that is reliable, clean and low cost electricity that will enable the country to capitalize on its economic dynamism and lead to sustainable development.”