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Leading international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills has assisted longstanding client Mitsui & Co., Ltd. on its agreement with Aker Horizons ASA to acquire a 27.5% equity stake in Aker's subsidiary Mainstream Renewable Power for €575 million.

Mitsui will acquire the stake in Mainstream's holding company through a share subscription and take a long-term active role in the growth of Mainstream, alongside Aker Horizons, which will own 54.4 percent of Mainstream following the transaction.

The transaction will also strengthen the strategic partnership between Aker and Mitsui, with companies seeking extend collaboration beyond renewable energy, to electricity trading, energy management, batteries, clean hydrogen and ammonia, and CCS.

Aker ASA, the owner of Aker Horizons, is an industrial investment company and biggest owner of the second largest oil & gas major in Norway. Aker established Aker Horizons as its platform for the investment, incubation and development of companies within the renewable energy and decarbonisation technologies sector.

Mainstream has developed 6.5gw of generation capacity to financial close-ready stage in addition to approximately 16.6gw high-quality energy assets in Latin America, Africa and Asia Pacific that are currently operating, under-construction or in development.

The team advising Mitsui was led by the firm's global head of energy Lewis McDonald in London, supported by partner Brigette Baillie's team in Johannesburg and a global team of law firms including Arntzen de Besche in Norway, Barros & Errázuriz in Chile, VILAF in Vietnam and PJS Law in the Philippines.     

"This strategically important transaction cements Mitsui's position as one of the leading renewable energy companies on the global stage," said Andrew Blacoe, the firm's Tokyo-based relationship partner for Mitsui. "We're delighted to have been able to support our client on this transaction and look forward to continuing to help Mitsui grow and prosper in the energy transition." 

"This has been an incredible deal to work on, and I've been blessed to work with such a talented group of lawyers from all over the world to make it happen," said the firm's global head of energy Lewis McDonald. "Mainstream Renewables is a truly global renewable energy platform that is set for rapid growth, and I'm immensely proud that we could play our part in helping Mitsui become a significant part of the Mainstream story." 

Aker Horizons was represented by BAHR of Norway, led by Stig Klausen Engelhart and supported by Erik Torrison and Lars Kristian Sande. 

Herbert Smith Freehills has a longstanding reputation in advising clients on first-of-their-kind, large-scale renewables projects and investments. The firm leads the way in the clean energy projects that will drive the energy transition. Read more about our vision and expertise.

Key contacts

Lewis McDonald photo

Lewis McDonald

Global Co-Head of Energy, London

Lewis McDonald
Brigette Baillie photo

Brigette Baillie

Partner, Johannesburg

Brigette Baillie
Andrew Blacoe photo

Andrew Blacoe

Head of Corporate, Asia, and Managing Partner, Tokyo, Tokyo

Andrew Blacoe

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Sally Greig

Sally Greig, Head of Communications, Asia

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Lydia Lam

Lydia Lam, Head of Communications, UK, US & EMEA