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The Aries Solar PV Energy Facility, with an installed capacity of 10.65MW, is located on a 20-hectare site approximately 36km southwest of the town Kenhardt in the Northern Cape Province. The Project was constructed over a nine month period and commenced operations in Q1, 2014.
The Facility was constructed by Juwi Solar GmbH (Juwi) through their local South African subsidiary on a fixed price, full turnkey basis. Juwi is a German company specialising globally in the construction and operations of solar PV facilities. The plant consists of ~45 000 internationally certified photovoltaic solar modules, manufactured by BYD (Shanghai) Industrial Co., Ltd, a leading Chinese manufacturer.
As with all of BioTherm’s South African projects, 40% of the project is owned by local shareholders which comprise of national broad based trusts, the local community trust, the employees of BioTherm, a consortium of black shareholders as well as the junior developer of the project. As a result, there is a significantly large base of beneficiaries, which is in line with the BioTherm corporate approach to developing projects. The remaining 60% is owned by BioTherm Energy, through its Dutch parent company, BTSA Netherlands Cooperatie U.A.
The senior debt on the project was jointly provided by both Nedbank Limited and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC). Juwi also acts as the operations and maintenance contractor for the project. A number of these activities are subcontracted to BioTherm Operations and Maintenance, a subsidiary of BioTherm Energy.