GIC acquires 17.5% stake in Philippines' AC Energy
Proceeds from private placement to fund renewable projects and potential acquisitions
24 Mar 2021 | Michael Marray

AC Energy Corporation (ACEN), backed by Ayala Corporation of the Philippines, has completed the first phase of a capital-raising exercise in which Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC will take a 17.5% stake in the company.

Philippine Stock Exchange-listed ACEN carried out a private placement under which an affiliate of GIC Private Limited, Arran Investment Pte Ltd, subscribed to four billion primary shares at a total cost 11.88 billion pesos (US$244.85 million). The proceeds will be used to fund various developmental and operating projects, as well as potential acquisitions.

AC Energy announced the board of directors’ approval of the investment in November 2020, and the signing of an investment agreement with GIC (together with AC Energy and Infrastructure Corporation or ACEIC, which is ACEN’s parent company) in December.

In addition to the private placement, there will be a purchase of secondary shares from ACEIC. The top-up will enable GIC to achieve the target 17.5% percent ownership of ACEN, taking into consideration GIC’s expected future dilution, including from the planned infusion of ACEIC’s international assets into ACEN.

With the completion of GIC’s private placement, GIC’s senior vice president for infrastructure, Nicole Goh Phaik Khim, was elected as director during the board meeting that followed the closing of the private placement.

“We are delighted to welcome GIC to our energy platform. We have been partners in the Bank of the Philippine Islands and we are delighted to build on this relationship in another fast-growing and dynamic sector,” says Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Ayala Corporation’s chairman and chief executive officer.

Scaling up

GIC provides not only growth capital but also the experience and network that will help ACEN scale up its renewables investments.

"With AC Energy’s geographically diversified portfolio of renewable energy assets and proven track record of profitable growth, we believe the company is well-positioned to capture the shift from fossil-based to clean, sustainable energy in the region,” says Ang Eng Seng, GIC’s chief investment officer for infrastructure.

The completion of the purchase by the GIC affiliate of secondary shares from ACEIC is subject to the completion of the infusion by ACEIC of its international assets into ACEN by way of a property for shares swap, and applicable regulatory approvals.

AlphaPrimus Advisors acted as financial adviser to ACEN and ACEIC.

ACEN, the energy platform of Ayala Corp., is one of the fastest-growing energy companies with over US$1 billion of invested and committed equity in renewable and thermal energy in the Philippines and around the region.

The company aspires to become the largest listed renewables platform in Southeast Asia, with the goal of reaching 5,000 megawatts of renewables capacity by 2025.