Actis seals Cameroonian electricity deal

Actis has completed the acquisition of the majority interest in three power assets in Cameroon from The AES Corporation. Actis will pay $202 million for a 56% stake in Cameroon’s national integrated utility, Société Nationale d’Electricité (SONEL), and in two independent power plants, Kribi and Dibamba.


Actis, a global pan-emerging market private equity investor, has completed the acquisition from The AES Corporation (AES) of the majority interest in three power assets in Cameroon following government and lender approval.

Actis will pay $202 million net of closing price adjustments for a 56% stake in Cameroon’s national integrated utility, Société Nationale d’Electricité (SONEL), and in two independent power plants, Kribi and Dibamba.

SONEL provides 933MW of generation and supplies electricity to over 800,000 customer connections throughout the country, while Kribi and Dibamba contribute a combined 302 MW towards Cameroon’s generation capacity. Actis will own SONEL, and Globeleq, Actis’ wholly-owned private power company, will directly own and operate Kribi and Dibamba.

Actis is an experienced energy investor, supplying over 33 million consumers around the world with electricity every day. Since 2002, the firm has invested over $1.4 billion into the sector, including Umeme, Uganda’s electricity distribution company, where it invested in 2005. In 2012, Actis led a heavily oversubscribed successful IPO on the Ugandan and Kenyan stock exchanges, attracting high quality institutional investors and a broad base of Ugandan retail investors into the company’s shareholding. Since 2011 Actis has also owned 92% of Energuate, which operates the majority of Guatemala’s national grid.

Speaking about the investment, Actis Energy Co-Head Torbjorn Caesar said:
‘We are pleased to have completed the transaction with AES. Cameroon is a country with great potential, and our considerable experience in the energy space, combined with our expertise in Africa, makes us confident that we can deliver strong infrastructure and excellent customer service.’

About Actis
Actis invests exclusively in the emerging markets with a growing portfolio of investments in Asia, Africa and Latin America; it currently has US$6.5 billion funds under management. Combining the expertise of over 100 investment professionals on the ground in nine countries, Actis identifies investment opportunities in three areas: private equity, energy and real estate. Since 2002 Actis has deployed in excess of US$1.4 billion in 24 energy transactions in power generation and electricity distribution assets, providing 33 million people with access to electricity. Including this transaction, it has energy investments in six countries in Africa. It operates under the highest standards of environmental, social and governance standards in the industry and helped the UN define the code for responsible investing. Actis is proud to actively and positively grow the value of those companies in which it invests and in so doing, contribute to broader society.

About Globeleq
Globeleq is an experienced developer, owner and operator of independent power projects in the emerging markets, with a specific focus on Africa and the Americas. The company develops economically sustainable businesses that support the continued development of the electric power sector in these regions.

About SONEL, Kribi and Dibamba
SONEL is an integrated utility with an installed generation capacity of 933 MW. The transmission and distribution network comprises of over 32,000km of high voltage, medium voltage and low voltage network across the entire country. Kribi is a 216MW gas fired plant, and Dibamba, Cameroon’s first Independent Power Producer, is an 86MW heavy fuel oil fired plant.

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