AREVA acquires leading Biomass company in Brazil
FINANCE / RENEWABLE ENERGY
January 17, 2008
AREVA announces today the acquisition of a 70% stake in Koblitz, a Brazilian provider of integrated solutions for power generation and co-generation (heat-generated power) from renewable sources. Its founder Luiz Otavio Koblitz and the main managers of the company will maintain a 30% stake in Koblitz.
Founded in 1975 in Recife, Koblitz has a total workforce of more than 500 people with branches in Sao Paulo and Sao José do Rio Preto, the largest sugarcane growing areas of the country. The company's core business is the supply of turnkey services for the construction of biomass and small hydro-electric power plants. Since 1996, Koblitz has participated in 76 biomass projects, including 58 using sugarcane bagasse¹, totalling more than 2.000 MW of references.
This acquisition is in line with AREVA's business development strategy on the CO2-free energy market. It strengthens the group's position in Brazil, where renewable energies already provide 90% of electricity and where the use of sugarcane bagasse should increase by 50% in the next five years. Brazil's renewable energy market offers a large potential with a required capacity growing by at least 5% (5.000 MW) per year to avoid electricity shortages.
AREVA will provide Koblitz with project management and Engineering, Procurement and Construction skills for the building of turnkey power plants. Koblitz will also benefit from AREVA's financial support and from its international sales network. Bertrand Durrande, Executive Vice-President of the Renewable Energies business unit, said: “This acquisition is a significant step for our biomass activities. After the 2007 acquisition of Multibrid, it confirms the will of the group to build up a renewable industrial division”.
AREVA is a key player in Brazil with a 2006 sales revenue worth 211 M€ and more than 1.200 employees. The group built the Angra 2 nuclear power plant and registered commercial orders in outage services as well as heavy equipment replacement. In the Transmission and Distribution segment, AREVA has 3 manufacturing sites located in Interlagos, Itajuba and Canoas.
¹Bagasse is the name given to the fibrous residue remaining after the extraction of juice from the sugarcane in refineries and distilleries.
Koblitz operates in the industry of energy generation and co-generation, adopting increasingly advanced concepts in electric and thermodynamic systems. Activities are developed based on the constant pursue of alternatives for energy systems integration aligned with modern times and with environmental concerns, enabling sustainable development and preservation to benefit future generations.