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Fri November 15 2019

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Kier quits food waste JV

19 Apr 17 Kier has sold its stake in its loss-making waste-to-energy joint venture Biogen for an undisclosed sum.

Kier invested £24.4m in anaerobic digestion specialist Biogen in August 2012, making it equal joint venture partners with Bedfordia Group, the founder.

With Kier backing, Biogen’s business has grown from two to seven anaerobic digestion plants around the UK, recycling around a quarter of a million tonnes of food waste each year, representing around 15% of the current food waste anaerobic digestion market. With an installed generation capacity of approximately 13MW, Biogen’s anaerobic digestion plants produce enough green energy to power approximately 25,000 homes.

However, Biogen has struggled to make money, especially since the removal of government subsidies. Biogen made an operating loss of £3.3m in 2015 (its last filed accounts) on turnover of £20.7m , following a loss of £1.1m in 2014. Market pressure on gate fees and the removal of levy exemption certificate (LEC) income were blamed.

Ancala Bioenergy, an infrastructure investment vehicle managed by Ancala Partners LLP, has now bought Biogen from Bedfordia and Kier.

Spence Clunie, managing partner of Ancala Partners, said: “Biogen is well known in the industry as one of the leading owners and operators of anaerobic digestion plants. The team has over 10 years of experience in the sector and their operational excellence and commercial reach provide Ancala with an established platform from which to expand in the sector.”

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