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Global investor Actis turns focus on Dubai solar platform

Solar panelling on a factory rooftop in Dubai by Yellow Door Energy

Actis, a London-headquartered investor in global sustainable infrastructure, has announced an agreement to acquire a controlling stake in Dubai-based Yellow Door Energy Limited (YDE).

Yellow Door Energy is a major solar platform in the Middle East and Africa region with around 200MW of secured production capacity. 

The transaction, the value of which has not been disclosed, will be funded through Actis’ Energy 5 Fund, with $6 billion of capital to accelerate global energy transition.

The deal is backed up by increased investments from existing YDE shareholders including Mitsui & Co, Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (Apicorp) and International Finance Corporation.

Actis said it will apply its buy-and-build power strategy to scale the business and accelerate growth.  It has invested in over 70 projects to date, generating about 11GW of renewable energy globally.

Closing of the transaction remains subject to obtaining the relevant regulatory approvals, Actis added in a statement.

YDE has one of the few commercial and industrial portfolios of scale in the region with 106mw in operation and 104mw awarded and under construction.

The company has relationships with a large customer base of over 50 companies, including Nestlé, Majid Al Futtaim, DHL, Mondelez and Unilever.

Lucy Heintz, partner and head of energy infrastructure at Actis, said: “We’re delighted to be contributing to the Middle East and Africa region’s transition away from fossil fuels.

“Our strategy is to build the business into the region’s distributed solar sustainability leader.”

Jeremy Crane, founder and CEO of Yellow Door Energy, added: “This investment from Actis shows the success of our company. I look forward to continuing our mission to provide clean, affordable, and reliable energy to businesses in the MEA region.

“As a result, our customers will become more successful, create more jobs and contribute to their local communities. This investment will enable us to scale geographically through both direct and merger and acquisition activities.”

Energy supply in the Middle East is heavily dependent on fossil fuels. Renewable technology deployment is a key enabler for businesses to achieve low carbon transition strategies, and Actis continues its mission to advance a low carbon transition with this investment.

Solar Panels, Electrical Device
Solar energy for Nestlé Middle East

Khalid Ali Al-Ruwaigh, CEO of Apicorp, said: “As one of our earliest equity investments in the renewable energy space, YDE has demonstrated strong business growth over the past few years. We believe having a reputable partner such as Actis will propel the company to the next stage of its growth. 

“The additional backing is especially relevant today considering the growing urgency to meet decarbonisation goals and bolster the sustainability of the regional energy landscape.”

Actis has also recently realised three major energy investments in Latin America – the largest independent renewable energy platform in Brazil, the largest renewable energy IPP (independent power provider) in Chile and a leading IPP in Mexico. 

In April, Actis announced the signing of an agreement to sell Sprng Energy, one of India’s largest renewable energy companies.

Most recently, it announced the launch of a power generation business dedicated to delivering energy transition in Southeast Asia, an investment in Omega Energia, the largest publicly listed pure-play renewable energy generation company in Latin America, and the launch of a Central and South Eastern Europe renewables platform.