BLP advises Mid Europa Partners on acquisition of a strategic stake in CEE renewable energy leader Energy 21

Law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has advised Mid Europa Partners (“Mid Europa”) on the acquisition of a strategic stake in Energy 21, the largest Czech-based independent developer and operator of solar power in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE).  The deal was announced yesterday (13 May 2010) and is subject to customary closing conditions.  Mid Europa is also in advanced discussions with a group of banks for a project finance facility for the transaction. The deal is particularly significant as it represents Mid Europa’s first investment in the renewables sector.

Mid Europa, which has approximately Euro 3.2 billion of assets under management, has also committed to inject new equity to support Energy 21’s growth strategy in CEE.

Mid Europa is a long standing client of BLP and this deal is the latest transaction on which the firm has advised following Mid Europa’s acquisition of the Slovenian cable and broadband operator UPC Slovenia in July 2009.

Energy 21 is the largest Czech-based independent developer and operator of solar power (photovoltaic) parks in Central and Eastern Europe, with an installed generation capacity of 26 megawatts and a further 75 megawatts in development.  The company is in the process of further growing its local market asset base and is evaluating opportunities to expand into other CEE renewable energy markets.

BLP partner, Robert Gross, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for Mid Europa as renewable energy has been identified as one of the core sectors to focus on.  We were very happy to act for Mid Europa on their first investment in this new industry.”

The BLP team was led by partner Robert Gross, assisted by associates Kiran Arora and Stephen Palmer.

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