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SoftBank Energy heads bidding in wind power auction

PW Bureau 

ReNew Power, France’s EDF and Italy’s Enel Power also made bids for 300-MW capacity each while Adani Green Energy and France-based Engie bid for 250 MW each New Delhi: SB Energy, backed by SoftBank Group Corp, has submitted its first bid — half of a 1,200-MW wind tender in the country — offered in a Central government auction that has drawn interest from numerous bids even though the industry’s concerns over land availability and transmission infrastructure remain. In the tender for which techno-commercial bids were to be submitted on February 5, ReNew Power, France’s EDF and Italy’s Enel Power also made bids for 300-MW capacity each while Adani Green Energy and France-based Engie bid for 250 MW each, industry sources said. The tender obtained offers for around twice the size offered due to a higher ceiling tariff, making the projects more appealing for renewable energy companies despite obstacles like land availability and infrastructure to transfer power from the plant to the grid.

Bids totalling 2,325-MW capacity received

The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), which had floated the tender under tranche-VI of wind power capacity in December, received bids totalling 2,325-MW capacity, sources said. The government’s measures in trying to address issues pertaining to land and transmission have mainly contributed to the strong response of the tender. Industry experts say developers believe that they would be able to wade through these bottlenecks, given this is a midsize tender. “The ceiling tariff of Rs 2.85 was perhaps one of the main reasons why this tender has seen a good response,” said a renewable energy firm executive who requested not to be identified.

SB Energy entry in standalone wind projects

For SB Energy’s bid is its first foray into standalone wind projects. In December, the company had bagged 450 MW in the country’s first hybrid tender that requires both solar and wind projects to be developed at the same location. “SoftBank has huge growth ambitions in India, but actual progress has been much slower than expected partly because of tender cancellations,” said Vinay Rustagi, managing director at renewable energy consultancy Bridge to India. “It is obvious for them to look at wind and other technologies as risk-reward for project developers in all these areas is converging,” he added.