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5 Apr 2024

Standard Bank partners with Seriti Green to facilitate renewable energy in Mpumalanga

Standard Bank is proud to announce that it has played a joint mandated lead arranger role in reaching financial and commercial close on Seriti Green’s 155MW renewable energy wind project in Mpumalanga, the initial phase of the greater Ummbila Emoyeni facility.

Seriti Green is an independent power producer and subsidiary of coal miner Seriti Resources, which is championing the just transition to cleaner and sustainable energy sources in the communities that are most affected by the energy transition.

To facilitate the transition, Standard Bank has committed project finance debt and equity into developing the 155MW wind farm as the initial phase of Seriti’s greater 900MW Ummbila Emoyeni project.

The renewable energy project comes at the opportune time for the province and South Africa, as several coal-fired power stations owned by power utility Eskom approach the end of their life cycles and may be decommissioned.

As a result, this project has been classified as a strategic infrastructure project which champions the just energy transition in the region. 

“Standard Bank’s understanding of the sector landscape and the needs of the stakeholders, recognition of the opportunity, power sector dynamics, and broader ESG context all led to the backing of a strong developer with access to grid in a location that was not previously considered a viable wind powered location,said Vincenzia Leitich, an Executive of Client Coverage Energy, and Infrastructure at Standard Bank.

The first phase of the project will create as many as 800 jobs and supply electricity to Seriti Resources following the signing of power purchase agreement in 2024. The 155MW wind energy facility is the first phase of Seriti’s larger 900MW Ummbila Emoyeni renewable energy cluster.

“It’s a major milestone for the Mpumalanga region, and a significant move forward in the decentralised energy sector for South Africa,” said Nicholas Knott-Craig, Senior Vice President Project Finance Debt and Advisory at Standard Bank. “It’s a great example of “Just Energy Transition” project financing engineered by Standard Bank.”

The wind farm will translate into a significant investment in the province along with the creation of jobs, procurement opportunities and social investment expenditure.

 “Seriti Green is critical to our business, to South Africa and to the entire continent. We believe that Seriti Green will not only contribute to alleviating the energy challenges we all face but will also uplift the lives of many stakeholders and benefit the province of Mpumalanga. This is one core investment that must be delivered,” said Mike Teke, CEO of Seriti Resources Group.

In addition to the green energy, Seriti Green intends to provide training, promote sustainable agricultural practices, and provide resources to stimulate livelihoods and SMME growth within local communities, with an initial focus on agriculture,said Peter Venn, Seriti Green Chief Executive Officer.

Standard Bank has committed to mobilising in excess of R250-billion in sustainable finance by 2026.