Etrion and Hitachi High-Tech Announce Closing of Project Financing to Build 34 MW of Utility-Scale Solar Projects in Japan
Etrion and Hitachi High-Tech to Build, Own and Operate 34 MW of Utility-Scale Solar Projects in Japan With Financing Arranged by Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND and TOKYO, JAPAN--(Sept. 1, 2014) - Etrion
Corporation ("Hitachi High-Tech") (TSE:8036), a subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd.
("Hitachi") today announced the planned construction of 34 megawatts ("MW")
in Japan with financing arranged by Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Limited
Marco A. Northland, Etrion's Chief Executive Officer, commented: "I am
honoured to be working alongside Hitachi High-Tech and SuMi Trust in Japan.
Japan is one of the largest solar photovoltaic ("PV") markets in the world
and having strong local partners has been instrumental in enabling us to
succeed in this exciting market. Etrion is one of the first foreign
Independent Power Producers ("IPPs") to secure financing to build
utility-scale solar plants in Japan and we are now well positioned to
replicate this model with Hitachi High-Tech to accelerate our growth plans.
These projects expand Etrion's geographic footprint providing a clear
diversified platform for growth bringing Etrion closer to its objective of
being in a position to declare dividends in the future."
Hidenori Nagao, Hitachi High-Tech's Vice President and Executive Officer and
General Manager of Global Trading Group, commented: "It is our great honour
to launch business in Japan's emerging solar market with Etrion, who has a
proven track record in the solar industry. These projects will be built with
our proven technical capabilities in engineering, procurement and
construction ("EPC") using Hitachi's highly efficient and reliable solar PV
power generation systems. Hitachi High-Tech, together with Etrion, are
targeting a total of 100 MW by 2015 and a total of 300 MW by 2017, including
these first two projects."
Kengo Noguchi, SuMi Trust's Executive Officer and General Manager of the
Structured Finance Department, commented: "We are very proud to partner with
Etrion and Hitachi High-Tech in developing their first two solar projects in
Japan. SuMi Trust is committed to supporting the country's shift to clean
energy and we look forward to assisting Etrion and Hitachi High-Tech as they
execute their growth plans, bringing more solar projects into the energy mix
Shizukuishi Solar Project (24.7 MW)
Shizukuishi is a 24.7 MW utility-scale solar PV power plant to be built in
the Iwate Prefecture of Japan. Construction-related works are expected to
commence in October 2014 and the solar project is expected to be operational
by the end of 2016. The solar power plant will be built on 51 hectares of
leased land and the facility will connect through the Tohoku Electric Power
Co., Inc. utility ("Tohoku Electric Power utility"). The project will enter
into a power purchase agreement ("PPA") with the Tohoku Electric Power
utility to receive Ą40 per kilowatt-hour ("kWh") produced (approximately
US$0.39 per kWh).
Once operational, Shizukuishi is expected to produce approximately 25.6
gigawatt-hours ("GWh") of solar electricity per year.
Mito Solar Project (9.3 MW)
Mito is a 9.3 MW utility-scale solar PV power plant to be built in the
Ibaraki Prefecture of Japan. Construction is expected to commence in
September 2014 and the solar project is expected to be operational by the
end of 2015. The solar power plant will be built on 27 hectares of leased
land and the facility will connect through the Tokyo Electric Power Company
utility. The project will enter into a PPA with the Tokyo Electric Power
Company utility to receive Ą40 per kWh produced (approximately US$0.39 per
Once operational, Mito is expected to produce approximately 10.3 GWh of
solar electricity per year.
The total project cost for both projects will be financed approximately 80%
through project debt from SuMi Trust with an 18-year tenor. The remaining
approximate 20% equity portion will be funded by Etrion and
Hitachi High-Tech based on their respective ownership interests of
approximately 87% and 13%.
These projects will be built by Hitachi High-Tech using the proven EPC
capabilities of Hitachi. Hitachi High-Tech will provide highly efficient PV
generation systems that incorporate Hitachi's power conditioning systems
(maximum efficiency: 98.8% at the world's highest standard / maximum direct
current voltage input: 1,000 volts) and their amorphous transformers which
are more efficient in practical load and can reduce standby power loss by
70% compared with Hitachi's conventional silicon-steel-cored transformers.
Operations and maintenance ("O&M") services will be provided by Hitachi
High-Tech through a long-term fixed-price agreement for each project.
Japan is one of the largest solar PV markets in the world with over 14
gigawatts ("GW") of installed capacity with a national solar power target of
28 GW by 2020.
In 2012, Etrion and Hitachi High-Tech signed a development agreement to
develop a pipeline of solar assets in Japan. Under this agreement, both
parties provide the key functions necessary to successfully develop, build
and operate solar projects in Japan (including, but not limited to,
obtaining the relevant permits and authorizations to build and operate the
solar power facilities, developing relationships with local utilities and
land owners, performing the EPC-related services and providing O&M and asset
management-related services). Shizukuishi and Mito are the first solar
projects to be built under this arrangement and the companies are targeting
to reach 100 MW by 2015 either under construction or shovel-ready.
About Hitachi High-Tech
Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation, headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is
engaged in a broad range of fields, including Electronic Device Systems,
Fine Technology Systems, Science & Medical Systems, Industrial & IT Systems,
and Advanced Industrial Products. The company's consolidated sales for 2013
were more than US$6.2 billion. Additional information is available at:
Etrion Corporation is an independent power producer that builds, owns and
operates utility-scale solar power generation plants. Etrion owns 17 solar
power plants in Italy with approximately 60 MW of installed capacity and has
a 70 MW solar project in Chile under construction that is expected to be
operational by the end of 2014. Etrion is also actively developing
greenfield solar power projects in Chile and Japan. The Company is listed on
the Toronto Stock Exchange in Canada and the NASDAQ OMX Stockholm exchange
in Sweden under ticker symbol "ETX". Additional information is available at:
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information provided herein pursuant to the Swedish Securities Market Act.
The information was submitted for publication at 4:00am Central European
Time (CET) on September 2, 2014.