Thai’s Vintage enters into Myanmar’s alternative energy business

Attracted by the country’s growth potential, Vintage Engineering plans to pursue alternative-energy business opportunities in Myanmar via the construction of a solar energy-driven power plant, after acquiring a stake in a company holding a permit for a 220-megawatt facility.

The listed company is also ready to acquire power plants in Thailand and abroad.

Vintage has allocated more than Bt2 billion for investment in alternative-energy business, mainly in solar-driven power plants overseas, chief executive officer Soraj Rojanabenjakul said yesterday.

The company hopes to raise its ratio of revenue from energy business to 80 per cent by the end of next year.

Vintage is turning to alternative-energy business as it offers attractive growth potential both locally and abroad to compensate for the now-saturated engineering business, he said.

When alternative-energy business accounts for the majority of the company’s revenue, Vintage may switch to be classified under the energy business group in the Stock Exchange of Thailand, he added.

The company’s board has approved the acquisition of 12 per cent of the shares in Green Earth Power for Bt666.05 million.

Green Earth Power has a licence to construct a 220MW solar energy-driven power plant in Myanmar, the first private firm to receive such a licence in the neighbouring country.

Myanmar offers room for growth as only 30 per cent of the population has access to electricity, said the Vintage CEO.

The solar-driven power plant will take 30 months to complete, in four phases. he first phase will commence within 12 months, with revenue scheduled to come on stream in mid-2016.

In addition, Vintage has plans to acquire several power plants, one of them locally – a biomass and solar-power plant – and a few foreign plants.

As for feeding its coal-fired power plants, Vintage currently has stakes in four coal mines in Indonesia.

The company plans to invest in an additional seven mines this year, Soraj said.

For this year’s operations, Vintage hopes to generate more than Bt1 billion in revenue, with some Bt550 million coming from traditional business and over Bt500 from energy business.

The company should revert to profitability in the second quarter of this year, allowing it pay a dividend, said the chief executive.

Source: The Nation

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