Severn Trent buys renewable energy business

SevernTrent Agrivert

Severn Trent has bought the Oxfordshire-based renewable energy generation business Agrivert for £120 million.

Founded in 1994, Agrivert UK is a leader in renewable energy generation from food waste, with five well-established food waste anaerobic digestion (AD) plants and five green and waste composting sites, located to the south and west of the Severn Trent region.

Agrivert’s UK operations will be added to Severn Trent’s existing non-regulated green power business. The water operator says the Agrivert plants will complement Green Power’s two operating food waste AD plants at East Birmingham (Coleshill) and West Birmingham (Roundhill) and one under construction in Derby (on track for commissioning by the end of the financial year). The acquisition will add 106 GWh per annum of energy generation to the 354 GWh currently produced by Severn Trent’s broader energy and renewables portfolio.

The purchase of Agrivert UK will take Severn Trent’s investment in energy and renewables to approximately £300 million by 2020, as it seeks to become a sector leader in sustainable resource efficiency, while driving down carbon emissions. 

Liv Garfield, Severn Trent Chief Executive said: “We’re delighted to welcome Agrivert UK into the Severn Trent Group. Renewable energy is strategically important to Seven Trent and the UK as a whole as we work towards achieving our decarbonisation targets and delivering attractive shareholder returns. 

“Agrivert UK strengthens our established presence in anaerobic digestion where we have been leaders in the water sector for many years. We have worked in partnership with Agrivert UK on a number of projects in recent years and have been hugely impressed by their engineering capability and expertise.”

Alexander Maddan, Agrivert’s Chief Executive, added: “As we finalised the latest expansion of our AD fleet, it was a natural juncture to create an even more competitive business by combining Agrivert UK with the Severn Trent Group. Our familiarity with the Severn Trent Group gives us great confidence that the Agrivert UK business is being transferred into good hands, allowing Agrivert Limited to concentrate on the engineering and overseas markets.” 

In the last full financial year ended 31/12/17 the acquired Agrivert businesses recorded revenue of £26 million and EBITDA of £10 million. EY Corporate Finance acted as sole financial adviser to Severn Trent.