Abengoa to sell 20% stake in Shams 1 CSP project

Troubled Spanish renewables group Abengoa will sell its 20% stake in the 100MW Shams 1 project in the United Arab Emirates, as part of its ongoing efforts to avoid bankruptcy.

Abengoa developed the Shams 1 concentrating solar power (CSP) plant, one of the world’s largest such projects, in cooperation with French energy giant Total and Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s state-owned renewables firm.

The Seville-based group filed for creditor protection in Europe in November.

It needs to free up roughly 300 million euros ($335m) of liquidity by the end of March to cover its operating costs, with about half of that to be funded by the sale of non-strategic assets, according to Reuters.

“We are committed to transforming the business in order to adapt to the changing environment, while keeping characteristic aspects of the company like cutting-edge technology and innovation,” said Abengoa chairman José Domínguez Abascal.

It did not disclose financial terms for the Shams 1 stake sale, but said that it has received more than 100 million euros in offers for a handful of non-strategic assets in recent months, including its stake in the CSP project and its offices in Madrid.

It expects to wrap up a number of additional transactions in the next few days, as part of a previously announced short-term disinvestment plan, according to a statement on its website.

In late January, Reuters reported that several Brazilian wind developers — including CPFL Renováveis and Renova Energia — may take over a number of Abengoa’s transmission line projects.