With its planned $100 million US listing hitting the skids, Azure Power Global Ltd may sell stakes in its operational projects to raise capital, said two people aware of the development.The New Delhi-based renewable energy firm has a solar power generation project portfolio of around 1,000 megawatt (MW) across 15 states.“Macquarie has been given the mandate. Azure Power wants to sell stakes to raise money,” said a person aware of the development requesting anonymity.
Another person, who also didn’t want to be identified, confirmed the development and said, “Azure Power wants to sell stakes in the existing projects and not the entire portfolio. The money raised will be used for building the projects in its pipeline.”InfraCircle on 27 July reported Azure Power may call off its US listing. The firm had planned to list on the New York Stock Exchange and filed an application with the Securities and Exchange Commission in December last year.Queries emailed to Azure Power, its external spokesperson and Macquarie Group on 10 August remained unanswered.
This comes in the backdrop of a growing consolidation in the renewable energy sector. Also, the National Institution for Transforming India Aayog will shortly come up with a national energy policy, to form the basis of India’s energy security paradigm, which will focus on clean energy resources such as solar and natural gas.Experts believe that renewables are already a competition for thermal sources of electricity generation.“The government must ensure that ongoing thermal projects must not suffer because of the upcoming renewable energy projects. The overall demand for renewable energy has been rising,” said Abhaya Agarwal, partner and public-private-partnership leader at EY, a consultancy firm.
Solar power tariffs have witnessed a steady decline in the past five years from a high of Rs.17.91 kilowatt per hour (kWh) in 2011 to Rs4.34 in January 2016. In comparison, new thermal power projects tariff average around Rs4.50 per unit.The Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance government has set a target of 175 gigawatt (GW) of renewable energy projects by 2022. Of this, 100GW is expected to be in the solar power domain and 60GW in wind power. India has an installed capacity of 26.8GW of wind and 7.6GW of solar power at present.