Japan’s IHI expands into U.S. biomas power
August 22, 2012, Chicago, IL – IHI Corp. has bought stakes in five California-based power plants, making a foray into the U.S. biomass power generation market.
The major Japanese plant and heavy machinery maker bought 45-50 pct of shares in three wood chip fuel-based biomass power plants and two coal-fired thermal plants owned by Exelon Corp., a major power company headquartered in Chicago, it said, adding the coal plants would be converted to biomass plants.
The cost of the share acquisitions for the five plants, which produce a combined 147,000 kilowatts, was not disclosed.
IHI will also operate and maintain the plants through a new subsidiary, with a view to launching plant operation and maintenance services for other power suppliers. Furthermore, the company aims to branch out into Asian markets once the U.S. operation proves successful, IHI officials said.
“This is an important step in establishing IHI as an owner and operator of renewable energy projects, “said Mikio Mochizuki, IHI Corporation Executive Officer and CEO of IHI INC. (USA), the company formed to oversee the portfolio of five California power plants. “These plants have an experienced workforce and a strong record of safe and efficient operation. This acquisition forms a solid platform for IHI’s further expansion into the energy services business in North America, which is a key element of our global growth strategy.”