Finadvice Mediterranean has advised NovaJoule, a Paris-based company and the brainchild of Mr. Franck Rabut, a veteran CHP developer and power and gas trader in France and elsewhere, in the acquisition of the Champblain gas-fired cogeneration plant from Kurento (formerly NovaWatt) in Paris. The Champblain power plant is located in Laveyron, a municipality in the Drome département in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, at the premises of the Emin Laydier paper mill, part of the Zaragoza-based Saica group of Spain. The plant, which fetches an installed capacity of 43 MW and a Siemens SGT800 gas turbine, was commissioned in 2000 as a cogeneration plant supplying steam to the paper mill and feeding power into the national power grid on the back of 12 year regulated power purchase agreement with EDF group according to the 1997 legislation supporting the development of CHP. Since the year 2013, the plant operates as a merchant power plant, i.e. is run when wholesale market power prices exceed its marginal cost of production. The plant is also entitled to capacity certificates under the capacity mechanism introduced in France in 2017.
The acquisition has been structured in an innovative way and mainly through the upfront monetization of various positive cashflow items, including premia from tolling agreements with private offtakers and capacity certificates for the upcoming 3 years.