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Industriens doubles money on Asian renewables investments

One of Denmark’s biggest pension funds has banked a 100% return on a range of Asian renewable energy investments.

Danish labour-market pension fund Industriens Pension said it had doubled its money on a number of assets it bought between 2012 and 2015.

The DKK163bn (€21.9bn) fund said sales of solar and wind energy investments in Japan, India, Thailand and the Philippines brought in DKK1.2bn.

Japan’s shift to solar energy in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident had contributed to the investment gains, boosting returns on a large portfolio of solar parks in which the pension fund had invested.

Jan Østergaard, Industriens’ head of unlisted investments, said: “The entire Japanese energy supply is undergoing rapid change, and our Japanese energy investments have yielded a great return.

“Solar cells have played a significant role in Japan’s desire to invest more in renewable energy sources following the Fukushima accident.”

The assets were purchased mainly via co-investments with specialist infrastructure funds.

Besides the Japanese portfolio, Industriens said it had also invested heavily in India’s energy supply.

In collaboration with funds run by specialist managers Actis and Equis, the pension fund said it had set up two portfolios of wind and solar power plants covering the electricity consumption of 1.3m Indian households.

In all of these projects, the capital invested was used to develop and operate new renewable energy assets that had been sold at big profits, according to Industriens.

“The energy investments in the Far East have delivered the goods in that respect and of course we are also happy to have been able to contribute to the conversion to renewable energy in the region,” Østergaard said.

Industriens said it expected to realise more profits from its renewable energy investments in developing countries in the next few months, with sales bringing in at least half a billion kroner – also marking gains of more than 100%.

At the same time, the fund said it was investing in new projects in cooperation with specialist infrastructure funds and local partners.

Renewable energy investments form part of Industriens Pension’s overall infrastructure portfolio, which has around DKK17bn of assets.

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