Jul 072013

MANILA, Philippines – Listed holding firm Jolliville Holdings Inc. plans to pursue two new hydropower projects with a generation capacity of 20 megawatts (MW) worth as much as $75 million.

The company aims to initially ride on the increasing energy demand in Mindoro province before expanding in new areas, its top official said.

“After the first 10-MW mini-hydro power plant, we might expand our hydropower plant by another 10-20 MW using the same source,” Jolliville chairman and CEO Jolly L. Ting said in an interview.

Based on a benchmark investment of $3-3.5 million per MW for hydropower projects, Jolliville will need $60-75 million for the two renewable energy projects.

Last week, Jolliville subsidiary Ormin Power Inc. borrowed P1.1-billion from state-owned Development Bank of the Philippines to fund the construction of the 10-MW Inabasan River hydropower project.

Ting said the loan covers 70 percent of the total project cost, with the remaining 30 percent to be sourced from internally-generated cash.

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The first phase of the run-of-river hydropower venture will start commercial operations in 2015.

“We will have to finish the first 10 MW and then we can be ready for another 10 MW,” Ting said, adding that Inabasan River can produce as much as 30 MW of power.

Electricity generated by the power plant will be sold to the Oriental Mindoro Electric Cooperative (Ormeco), the sole power distributor in the province.

Ormeco distributes power to the entire province of Oriental Mindoro which consists of Calapan City and 14 municipalities including Puerto Galera, San Teodoro, Baco, Naujan, Victoria, Socorro, Pola, Pinamalayan, Gloria, Bansud, Bongabong, Roxas, Mansalay and Bulalacao.

Additional generating capacity will also be sold to Ormeco, Ting said, adding that Jolliville is focusing on the economic growth prospects in Oriental Mindoro.

Ting said the company’s power ventures will initially focus on Oriental Mindoro “so we can enhance our expertise in renewable energy and it will be easier for us to go to other areas.”

For other areas, Ting said Jolliville is interested to join the bidding for mini-hydropower projects.

Early last year, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) completed its technical study for mini-hydropower projects. JICA’s two-year study showed the viability of putting up 40 to 50 run-of-river hydropower sites in Luzon and the Visayas.

All sites, which will be auctioned by the Department of Energy, are conducive for hydropower projects with a generating capacity one to 10 MW.

Aside from power projects, Jolliville is also looking to expand its water distribution business.

Maynilad Water Services Inc. is in talks to partner with Jolliville subsidiary Calapan Ventures Inc.

Ting said partnering with other firms will give the company more financial muscle to expand in new areas like Visayas and Mindanao.

“But with or without (a partner), Calapan Ventures will pursue expansion in other parts of the country,” Ting said.

Calapan Ventures owns 100 percent of Calapan Water Works Corp., owner and operator of the water system of Calapan in Oriental Mindoro and the water distribution system in Tabuk in Kalinga province. It also operates in Agoo, La Union.

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