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Africa50, Colas, Jovena & SN Power partner to develop Volobe Hydropower project in Madagascar

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About the entity

Africa 50
Africa50 is an infrastructure investment platform that contributes to Africa's growth by developing and investing in bankable projects
Schneider Electric
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  • Africa50, Colas, Jovena & SN Power partner to develop Volobe Hydropower project in Madagascar

Africa50, Colas, Jovena and SN Power signed a shareholders’ agreement on Friday to develop the Volobe hydropower plant in Madagascar.

The project entails the construction and operation of a 120 MW hydropower plant on the Ivondro river, 40 kilometers from Toamasina, to be operated under a 35-year concession. It also includes the construction of a transmission line, refurbishment of the access road and infrastructure for the neighbouring villages.

Under the terms of the agreement signed today in Paris, partners agree to co-develop the hydropower plant by acquiring equity in Compagnie Générale d’Hydroélectricité de Volobe (CGHV), the project manager. Following this transaction, the shareholding of CGHV is comprised of Jovena (40%), Africa50 (25%), SN Power (25%) and Colas (10%).

Jovena, a leading local industrial player, will provide institutional support while Africa50, the pan-African infrastructure investment platform, will bring its project development and finance expertise on board; SN Power, a leading player in hydropower infrastructure, will offer its technical and operational know-how; and Colas, its expertise as a major infrastructure construction company operating in Madagascar.

Considered as a priority in Madagascar’s national development program, Volobe seeks to provide reliable and affordable access to electricity for over two million Malagasy, thereby contributing to the country’s transition towards renewable energy. The power plant will reduce the cost of electricity to the end user. The project is expected to create up to 1,000 direct jobs during construction. It is expected to be commissioned by 2023.

During the signing ceremony, Hassanein Hiridjee, CEO of the Axian Group, said “We are proud today to partner with Colas, SN Power and Africa50, through Jovena, to deliver a project as decisive as the Volobe hydroelectric plant. At Axian, our activities are guided by our commitment to deliver positive impact that will improve the lives of the greatest number of people. We believe that access to energy is a fundamental right, and this drives our ambition to provide electricity to virtually the entire island, while protecting our planet and thus offering clean, sustainable and renewable energy.” 

Benjamin Memmi, CEO of Jovena, added “Volobe is a perfect illustration of the positive impact we want to have on the development of our country. Jovena invests in projects that can modernize Madagascar's network and offer more reliable, sustainable and accessible energy solutions to all Malagasy.“» 

Alain Ebobissé, CEO of Africa50, explained “We are pleased to work alongside the Axian Group and SN Power in this strategic project which seeks to improve the lives of the Malagasy people while also supporting the implementation of the government’s socio-economic development agenda. Africa50’s expertise enables to accelerate the execution of such projects to help tap Africa’s vast hydropower potential.”

Erik Knive, CEO of SN Power, added “SN Power is pleased to settle the agreements bringing us in position to contribute to the realization of the project together with the other partners. The project will bring clean, sustainable, reliable and flexible energy to Madagascar and will power the development of the country. The project is securing optimal utilisation of an important part of the waste hydropower resources of the country to bring affordable energy to the people in line with our strategic goals.”

Fabrice Monnaert, Major Projects Manager, Colas, stated “Volobe is an important project for the Colas Group, which has been present on the island for nearly 70 years. In addition to the upgrading of Antananarivo and Nosy Be airports, the completion of the Volobe-Amont project will allow Colas to further its contribution to the development of Madagascar.”