Econcern Aims to Invest $17 Billion in 'Sustainable Energy Projects'

Econcern, the privately owned, Utrecht-based renewable power group, is aiming to invest between EUR 10bn and EUR 12bn in “sustainable energy projects” by 2012.

The figures, equivalent to between USD 15.5bn and USD 18.6bn, include the debt that the company would raise to help finance projects. Econcern wants to be making revenues of EUR 8bn and profits of EUR 1bn by 2012, it said in a statement.

Profits for the year to 31 December 2007 were EUR 85m (USD 132m), up 95%, on revenues up 86% at EUR 443m (USD 687m). Its portfolio of renewable-energy project is now 6.5GW, the company said.

It also revealed that it sold a stake in Dutch solar cell manufacturer Solland for EUR 26m last year, compared to the EUR 4m it originally paid. Some 90% of Solland’s equity was bought by Sunergy, a subsidiary of Dutch utility Delta, on 31 January 2007.

Ad van Wijk, chairman of Econcern, was bullish on prospects for offshore wind, a sector where his company saw first power generated by its Q7 project in December.

He told New Energy Finance: “Offshore wind is as feasible, profitable and viable as before. The costs of equipment and people are rising, but oil and electricity prices are rising faster.”

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