Duke Energy acquires two hydropower projects in Chile

Duke Energy International has acquired the Chilean assets of CGE Group, including two hydropower projects with a combined capacity of 140 MW, in a $415 million transaction.

CGE’s Chilean subsidiary, Iberoamericana de Energia Ibener S.A., owns the Peuchen and Mampil hydro energy projects on the Duqueco River. In 2009, Spanish utility Iberdrola sold its 94.74% stake in Ibener to Compania General de Electricidad S.A.

Duke has been operating in Chile since July 2012, and Chile is now the fourth largest country in terms of generating capacity for the company’s international operations.

“Chile is an attractive market to grow our business, and these assets are an excellent addition to our existing South American hydroelectric power plants,” says Andrea Bertone, president of Duke Energy International.

Citigroup and Banchile Citi acted as advisors to Duke Energy International on the transaction. In the first quarter of 2013, the company expects to close on secured financing from a group of local banks for about half of the purchase price.

Duke Energy International is a subsidiary of Duke Energy Corp.

In other news, earlier this month the South Carolina Court of Appeals reversed a lower court finding that South Carolina waived its right to issue water quality certification necessary for relicensing of Duke Energy’s 724.74-MW Catawba-Wateree hydroelectric project.

The 111-MW Chacayes hydro project in Chile, owned by Pacific Hydro Chile, was honored as Hydro Project of the Year during the POWER-GEN International Project of the Year awards gala in December in Orlando, Fla.

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