Grupo Alten began working on the African continent in Kenya, the leading country in Eastern Africa and the destination of increasing international investment in recent years.  Given the legal security of the country, Alten began developing several utility scale projects there.

Currently, the company has three projects underway in the country: Kesses 1 with 51.5 MWp of power under a PPA process, in the Eldoret area; Kesses 2 and Timau, projects that account for a combined capacity of 103 MWp. The first of them will also be built in Eldoret, near Kesses 1, and the second near Mount Kenya.

Kesses 1

This photovoltaic project is the first in Kenya for Grupo Alten. It is located in the state of Uasin Gishu, nearby Eldoret, the fifth most populated city in Kenya.  The project will be connected with an already existing 230 kV evacuation line between the Turkwell hydraulic power plant and the Lessos substation. This evacuation line crosses the land where the plant is located which means all the evacuation infrastructure may be completed within the borders of the plant.

Grupo Alten has also now initiated a PPA with Kenya Power and Lightning Co|KPLC, a state-owned company that is responsible for the country’s electrical energy transmission, distribution and sale system. Furthermore, the plant is subject of a financial deal being finalised with several international financial institutions and negotiations are in the final stages with the government of Kenya so construction on the project may begin in the first half of 2017, to reach a commercial operation date at same time in 2018 following 14 months of construction work.

The plant will be equipped with crystalline modules and will use single-axis trackers to enhance production.

The project will comply with international standards including the IFC Standards and Equator Principles and will feature the participation of local labour and specialists throughout the plant construction and operation.

Kesses 1 Technical Characteristics:

  • Peak power: 51.5 MWp
  • Country: Kenya
  • State: Uasin Gishu
  • Municipality: Eldoret
  • Shareholders: 70% Alten Renewable Energy, 30% Local Shareholders
  • Technology: Crystalline silicon on a single-axis tracker.
  • Expected construction start date: Q1-2 2017
  • Start of operations: 14 months after the start of construction

Kesses 2 and Timau

Grupo Alten has developed another two projects in Kenya: Kesses 2 and Timau, which account for a combined power of 103 MWp. Kesses 2, situated near the first project, Kesses 1, with similar power of 51.5 MWp. It will be connected to a 132 kV evacuation line, which is directly linked to the city of Eldoret. This project is completely developed and only awaiting PPA negotiations to begin with Kenya Power and Lightning Co.

The third project, known as Timau, will be located near Mount Kenya, and will have an estimated power of another 51.5 MWp. It is in the development process and Grupo Alten hopes to be able to begin the final development phase very soon.