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Valdostana delle Acque Obtains a Green Loan From UniCredit For Investment in Renewables

The new facilities, with a total capacity of 25 MW, will be operational from 2023 and will produce more than 35 GWh per year, meeting the energy needs of UniCredit’s data centers in Verona and covering about 20 percent of the bank’s total electricity consumption in Italy. CVA will sell the energy to UniCredit at a defined price, optimizing the risk profile of the investment in its assets.

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Valdostana delle Acque spa (CVA), a company indirectly owned by the Autonomous Region of Valle d’Aosta and active in the production of electricity from renewable sources, has obtained from Unicredit a maxi green loan totaling €100 million aimed at achieving specific ESG objectives.

More specifically, these are two lines of credit of €50 million each, one long-term and one revolving credit facility, sustainability-linked or linked to the company’s sustainability performance. In this case, the transaction between Unicredit and CVA involves the achievement of specific targets that will be realized through the increase of green power generation capacity from wind and photovoltaic sources and the reduction of direct and indirect CO2 emissions generated by the company.

CVA is one of the most important Italian companies in the green energy sector, the only integrated producer operating exclusively on renewable sources. Its history began in 1995, when Valle d’Aosta acquired three hydroelectric plants owned by ILVA Centrali Elettriche, which had been founded six years earlier to manage the hydroelectric assets serving Cogne Acciai Speciali. In 1997, the Issime hydroelectric power plant, previously owned by the region, was also acquired. Then, in 2000, Enel’s hydroelectric plants were acquired. The Aosta Valley thus became the first Italian region to secure entirely local water management and hydroelectric generation.

CVA’s current installed capacity is 1,104 MW, with an annual output of 2.8 billion Wkh of energy that is generated in 32 hydroelectric power plants, 4 photovoltaic parks, and 3 wind farms distributed i Valle d’Aosta, Piedmont, Tuscany, Lazio, Puglia, and Campania. The terms of the agreement, to horizon 2023, will help the company increase its installed capacity by 234 MW and reduce its CO2 emissions by more than 50 percent.

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In 2021, Valdostana delle Acque had revenues of €658 million, recording an Ebitda of €179 million against net debt of €212 million

Giuseppe Argirò, CEO of CVA, said, “Sustainability is in the DNA of the CVA Group, which has always produced only clean energy. The partnership with Unicredit is a strategic one, and the fact that one of the most important credit institutions in the country supports our business model and backs our important industrial growth plan is further confirmation for us of the validity of our vision and our work.”

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Paola Garibotti, Unicredit’s Northwest Regional Manager, added, “This important operation testifies to our sensitivity to both the development of local businesses and environmental issues: we wish to make our concrete contribution to the transformation of the economy in a sustainable direction, encouraging investments that go to increasing the share of energy from renewable sources produced in the country, also consistent with the objectives of the PNRR.”

In the wake of this collaboration, last July Unicredit, as part of its ESG strategy, signed precisely with CVA ENERGIE SRL A S.U a partnership for the supply of electricity produced from renewable sources (see here the press release from that time). For the first time in Italy, a financial institution has committed to a corporate PPA (Corporate Power Purchase Agreement) with a producer specializing in renewable energy. The collaboration will lead to the construction of three new solar power plants in Piedmont, Lombardy, and Sicily.

The new facilities, with a total capacity of 25 MW, will be operational from 2023 and will produce more than 35 GWh per year, meeting the energy needs of UniCredit’s data centers in Verona and covering about 20 percent of the bank’s total electricity consumption in Italy. CVA will sell the energy to UniCredit at a defined price, optimizing the risk profile of the investment in its assets.

Going even further back in time, in November last year CVA had placed senior unsecured bonds for the first time in private placement in the amount of €50 million, also underwritten by Unicredit. The bond was listed on the regulated market of Euronext Dublin, with a maturity date of November 22, 2028 and a coupon of 1.119 percent per annum.

Piazza Gae Aulenti has been very active in recent months in providing green loans. The latest include one backed by Sace Guarantee, for €2.5 million and with a 10-year term, for Simplast srl, a company in Civitella del Tronto (Teramo) specializing in the production and printing of flexible packaging. Previously, Unicredit had provided a €1.5 million loan with Sace Guarantee for Esbe Italiana, for the Piber Group company specializing in innovative and complete solutions in the plastic food container sector. The transaction, which is aimed at supporting working capital, will also support the company’s development strategy, which includes investments in the sustainability of the production cycle. Previously, with a €1.5 million transaction, the bank had supported Grosseto-based Elettromar spa, an engineering and construction company that offers solutions geared toward optimizing production processes through the creation of integrated industrial automation systems. The loan, which is 80 percent backed by a guarantee from the SME Guarantee Fund, managed by MCC on behalf of the Ministry of Economic Development, has a three-year amortization period and is aimed at supporting the company in streamlining its supplier payment operations. Even earlier, a €2 million loan backed by a SACE guarantee was provided to Lamipel spa, a historic company specializing in the tanning sector. The operation, which has an amortization period of five years, is intended to provide support for the working capital of the company, which has its headquarters in Santa Maria a Monte (PI) and factories in Montebello Vicentino, Chiampo, and Arzignano (VI).

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First published in Be Beez, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.

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J. Frank Sigerson is a business and financial journalist primarily covering crypto, cannabis, crowdfunding, technology, and marketing. He also writes about the movers and shakers in the stock market, especially in biotech, healthcare, mining, and blockchain. In the past, he has shared his thoughts on IT and design, social media, pop culture, food and wine, TV, film, and music. His works have been published in Investing.com, Equities.com, Seeking Alpha, Mogul, Small Cap Network, CNN, Technology.org, among others.