(Bloomberg) — Banco Santander SA, Spain’s largest bank,
started a low-carbon and water investment company backed by $2
billion in assets with two Canadian pension funds.
Cubico Sustainable Investments, based in London, will be
held equally by Santander, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
and the Public Sector Pension Investment Board, the investment
company said Thursday.
“Renewable and water infrastructure developments require
decisive long-term investment and commitment,” said Chief
Executive Officer Marcos Sebares, previously of Santander.
“We’ve already built a strong pipeline of attractive assets.”
The aim is to double the size of Cubico within five years,
targeting returns of at least 10 percent depending on the risk
profile, geography and stage of project development, Sebares
said in a conference call.
The $2 billion portfolio comprises 19 wind, solar and water
facilities either operating or being built. Previously owned by
Madrid-based Santander, the sites generate more than 1,400
megawatts and are in Brazil, Mexico, Uruguay, Italy, Portugal,
Spain and the U.K. Company plans are to enter Peru and Colombia
and to consider investments in offshore wind.
“With renewables technologies maturing, the sector is
seeing increasing interest from institutional investors such as
pension funds,” said Janis Hoberg, an analyst at Bloomberg New
Energy Finance. “They may be particularly attracted by the
yields offered by renewables projects in Europe thanks to
current low interest rates and slowly diminishing policy risk.”
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