REC and Orascom form solar joint venture
Pair to provide turn-key solar power solutions in Egypt, Africa and the Middle East.
Germany-based solar company REC and O Capital for Services and Contracting, a fully owned subsidiary of Egypt’s Orascom Telecom Media and Technology Holding, have signed a new strategic venture to provide turn-key solar power solutions in Egypt, Africa and the Middle East.
The collaboration combines REC’s solar panels and expertise in solar power turn-key solutions with O Capital’s access to the promising local and regional solar markets and its excellent position in Egypt’s infrastructure projects.
The two companies plan to co-develop a sales-focused and go-to-market approach where O Capital will manage tender processes for solar installations in the residential, commercial and utility segments and provide the relevant local expertise and resources for the turn-key installations, while REC will add its strong engineering expertise.
REC is assisting Orascom subsidiary O Capital with its knowledge on best-practice in EPC and O&M through on-the-job training and workshops to help get new solar projects in the region up and running effectively and reliably.
In addition to REC’s long track record in the region, recent installation projects include one of the world’s largest solar test facilities in Dubai and the first privately financed large commercial rooftop installation in Dubai’s free zone.
Furthermore, REC’s solar panels have been installed on the rooftop of a terminal at Dubai International Airport. More projects are already in the pipeline, and the new cooperation with O Capital is certain to bring more.
Orascom founded O Capital earlier this year as a dedicated arm to execute renewable energy projects as part of OTMT’s new portfolio.
O Capital for Energy, a sister company of O Capital, was one of the first companies to be granted the temporary license to build and operate a 50 MW solar power plant within the Feed-in-Tariff program of the Government of Egypt.
“We are delighted to be working with O Capital,” said Luc Grare, Senior Vice President EMEA at REC. “The new cooperation gives us greater access to new tenders and customers in Egypt and other countries in the region offering amazing growth opportunities for solar energy.
“We expect the Middle East and Africa to become the second-largest region worldwide by 2017 in terms of new solar capacity added annually. Looking at Egypt, the government clearly understands the importance of power security for households and corporations and the economic potential solar is presenting as one of the fastest growing industries.”
With demand for electricity growing rapidly, countries in the Middle East and North Africa region are increasingly focusing on renewable sources in their quest for greater energy security.
Egypt’s renewable energy sector offers some of the region’s most lucrative opportunities and aims for steep growth over the next few years: by 2020, the country hopes to source 20% of its electricity from renewables, up from just 1% today.
Analysts expect the installed capacity to top 2,500 MW by that time. Saudi Arabia has similar ambitions and targets 41 GW of renewable energy by 2042, or one third of its power needs. Dubai, Morocco and Tunisia have also set high targets.
Tamer El Mahdi, Chairman of O Capital and Deputy CEO of OTMT, said: “We are delighted to have reached such an agreement with REC, a company with a strong brand and a large footprint in the solar market.
“We are looking forward to a successful business alliance within the region. This cooperation is a vital step in accomplishing OTMT’s strategy to expand its business into the renewable energy sector.
“OTMT’s strong local management and strong financial position together with REC’s strong and sustainable track record will enable this new alliance to dominate this growing market in Egypt and the region.”