Michelmores advises Downing on sale of Merlin Renewables Limited to JLEN

Michelmores' Energy team has advised Downing on the sale of Merlin Renewables Limited to JLEN, the listed environmental infrastructure fund. The acquisition builds on JLEN's growing portfolio of four anaerobic digestion (AD) projects and brings the total capacity of the renewable energy assets in the JLEN investment portfolio to 274.2MW.

The sale was for a total consideration of £18.1m, including working capital and funded by a draw-down under JLEN's revolving credit facility. Michelmores also advised on the previous sales of the Egmere, Grange Farm and Vulcan AD plants to JLEN.

The Merlin AD plant is located in Hibaldstow, North Lincolnshire, and was commissioned in September 2014. The plant has a thermal capacity of c.5MWth and predominantly produces biomethane to be injected into the national gas grid. The plant also has a 0.5MWe CHP (combined heat and power) engine and is accredited under the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) and Feed-in-Tariff (FiT) schemes. The AD plant has been acquired from Venture Capital Funds managed by Downing LLP and minority shareholders. Future Biogas Limited will continue to provide management, operations and maintenance services to the AD plants after the acquisition.

Alexandra Watson, Partner in the Energy team led the project with support from Paralegal, Amy Tomlinson.

Alexandra Watson said:

"We are delighted to have advised Downing on another strategic disposal. Our in-depth knowledge of the energy sector means we are ideally placed to provide practical and timely advice in the secondary market as investments are realised."