Impsa confirms Brazil asset sales

Wind Power Energia (WPE), the Brazilian unit of Argentine turbine maker, Impsa, denies it is insolvent despite confirming it will sell some generation assets to offset “temporary” liquidity problems.

WPE says the cash flow shortage resulted from payment delays by Eletrobras for electricity sales from some of its wind farms under the federal government's renewable energy incentive program Proinfa.

“It's important to reaffirm that WPE's business continue in its normal course and that the company is working in favor of Brazil's infrastructure growth and that of its energy sector”, Impsa says in a press release.

Impsa produces wind and hydroelectric power turbines in Brazil and operates 703MW of wind generation capacity there. It has a turbine assembly plant in Pernambuco State.

On 6 August, a local court in Pernambuco State ruled that the company was insolvent after Libra Porto Valungo, a logistics company and port operator, filed a lawsuit alleging Impsa didn't pay R$10.6m in storage services.

The judge ruled that Impsa failed to prove it is insolvent and named an independent administrator to appraise Impsa's assets and prepare them for sale. Impsa would use funds raised to pay the debt. The judge also ruled that Impsa must pay all Libra Porto’s legal costs.

The bankruptcy ruling came even though Impsa argued that the debt was guaranteed by 13 wind towers held by Libra valued at R$2.2m. 

Impsa also says in the statement that it had already reached an agreement with Libra over the debt on 28 July.  

Impsa says Eletrobras has withheld electricity sales payment for 30 months. That, in turn, has also forced it to raise more short-term debt and has increased financing costs.

Eletrobras is declining to pay Impsa's power generation unit, Energimp, due to unclear regulatory changes in Proinfa’s 20-year power purchase agreements.

The two sides are seeking a solution under supervision of a court which ruled that Eletrobras must resume payments..

Business daily Valor Economico previously reported Impsa as claiming that Eletrobras owed it R$250m in 2013, which was denied by the state-controlled company.