The AES Corporation (NYSE:AES) announced that it has signed agreements to sell its electric generation and distribution businesses in Cameroon to Actis, a global pan-emerging market investor, for $220 million of net equity proceeds. AES Société Nationale d’Electricité (AES-SONEL), an affiliate of AES, entered the Sub-Saharan country of Cameroon in 2001 and began investing in the country’s electricity sector. AES has also signed agreements to sell its wind generation assets in India and its wind development pipeline in Poland. Total net equity proceeds from the three sales are expected to be $236 million. Subject to customary regulatory, lender and other local approvals, these transactions are expected to close by the first quarter of 2014.
“We are very proud of what we’ve accomplished during AES’ 12 years in Cameroon,” said Andrew Vesey, Chief Operating Officer of AES. “The company’s overall contribution to the advancement of the country’s power sector has been driven by the AES mission to improve lives and the relentless efforts of the AES-SONEL team. This is a great example of a successful public-private partnership with the Government of Cameroon.”
“We continue to execute on our strategy of narrowing our geographic focus. With these sales, AES will have exited eight countries and 21 businesses and received $1.4 billion in proceeds,” said Andrés Gluski, AES President and Chief Executive Officer. “We see our best opportunities in investing in our existing platforms, where we feel we have a long-term sustainable competitive advantage.”
AES-SONEL received the electric power industry’s most prestigious honor, the Edison Electric Institute’s (EEI) 2013 International Edison Award for its program to renew and expand Cameroon’s electricity infrastructure. AES’ efforts enabled a near doubling of the number of Cameroonian families with access to electricity. AES also constructed two independent power plants (IPP) to provide thermal generation to supplement SONEL’s hydroelectric generation: Dibamba, which was Cameroon’s first IPP, an 86 MW heavy fuel oil-fired plant designed to provide peaking power; and Kribi, a 216 MW gas-fired plant that was put into service in May 2013.