MANILA, Philippines — ACEN Corp., the listed energy platform of the Ayala Group, is planning to borrow P6 billion to fund the company’s expansion plan.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange yesterday, ACEN said its board approved to close additional term loan facilities of up to P6 billion to support the company’s growth plans.
At the same time, the ACEN board also cleared the issuance of corporate guarantees in support of the company’s Australia projects for an aggregate of up to AUD $360 million.
ACEN president and CEO Eric Francia said the company has enough leverage to fuel its expansion since its debt-to-equity ratio is 0.35.
“From equity perspective, we don’t expect or need to raise at least in the short term. From a debt perspective, definitely we’ll continue to tap debt finance,” he said.
For this year, the company is investing P55.5 billion to fund its renewables portfolio expansion, a significant 68 percent increase from P33.1 billion last year.
The company intends to use the capital expenditure (capex) for the aggressive development of new capacity in the Philippines to address the country’s power supply challenges, as well as the construction of its 521-megawatt (MW) New England Solar Farm in Australia and 420-MW Masaya Solar Farm in India.
Among its ongoing projects in the Philippines include 484- MW of new wind and solar capacity. In particular, ACEN issued notice to proceed for the construction of the 283.7-MW San Marcelino Solar Farm in Zambales.
ACEN has raised P48 billion from various capital raising activities last year.
“We raised a lot of equity last year… approximately P48 billion. We do have substantial amount of cash in our balance sheet, but we also have significant amount of capex,” Francia said.
Meanwhile, ACEN has a renewable energy pipeline of 18,000-MW in its current covered markets, and these are in various stages of progress, being developed organically and with partners.
Of the total, 8,100- MW is in Australia, 6,500 -MW in the Philippines, 1,600-MW in Vietnam and 1,800 -MW in India and other markets.
The massive pipeline puts the company in a strong position to reach its 5,000-MW target earlier than 2025, towards its vision of becoming the largest listed renewables platform in Southeast Asia.