The 10MW Aries PV Solar Energy Facility (the “Project” or “Facility”) is located on a 30-hectare site (the “Site”) approximately 36 km southwest of Kenhardt in the Northern Cape Province. The Project reached financial close in November 2012 and has begun its construction period. It is anticipated tat the project will reach COD in December 2013. The Facility will has a nameplate capacity of 10MW and a maximum connection point capacity of 45MVA, and will be comprised of 45,000 photovoltaic solar modules (the “Solar Modules”) manufactured by BYD (Shanghai) Industrial Co., Ltd, a Chinese manufacturer that produces modules internationally certified to IEC 61215 and IEC 61730 standards and has invested $3.3 billion into their manufacturing facilities.
BTSA, the parent company of BioTherm Energy is the lead equity sponsor of the Project. BTSA is wholly owned by Denham Commodity Partners Fund V. LP (“DCPFV”), which is advised by Denham Capital Management LP, a global private equity firm focused on energy and commodities with invested and committed capital in excess of US$7.5 billion. For the Aries Project, BTSA has partnered with three Broad Based Empowerment Trusts: the Aries Solar Facility Community Trust, Ikamva Labantu Empowerment Trust (“Ikamva”) and Malibongwe Women Development Trust (“Malibongwe”) (collectively the “BBBEE Partners”). Furthermore, it has also partners with a group of BEE investors known as Winners Circle. The remaining shareholder is Aurora Power Solutions who were the junior developers of the Project. Nedbank and the IDC are the joint lenders to the Project Company.
The Facility will be built by juwi Solar GmbH (“juwi”), a German company specializing in the construction and operation of solar PV facilities, through its South African subsidiary (the “Contractor”). The Contractor will engineer, procure inputs for and construct the Facility on a fixed price, turnkey basis and on other terms agreed to with the Project Company. The Contractor, as maintenance provider (“Maintenance Provider”), will also provide maintenance services pursuant to the terms agreed to with the Project Company. The Facility will be operated and managed by BioTherm Operations and Maintenance (Pty) Ltd (“BioTherm O&M”), a South African company that is a wholly owned subsidiary of BioTherm Energy (Pty) Ltd (“BioTherm”) and currently operates two projects in South Africa.