Could you please provide us with an overview of Mashav Energia, its operations and milestones achieved in Poland so far?

Mashav Energia has been operating in Poland for a decade now, and during this time, we have experienced the highs and lows of the market. We have learned that resilience is crucial in this business and it has played a significant role in our success. Our company has already developed 60 MW of energy, and in 2018, we started construction of Potegowo Wind Farm, the largest project in Poland with an installed capacity of 220 MW. We initiated this project before the auction system was announced and without any government support, which we see as a real breakthrough.

What do you consider to be the most important lessons that you have learned along the way, and what advice would you give to other players operating in Poland’s volatile renewable energy market?

One crucial lesson we have learned is that there is a significant difference between being “ready-to-build” and “bankable.” The nuances between the two are mainly related to the preparation phase, where hundreds of “boxes need to be checked.” For instance, having a building permit and a project plan is not enough; one also needs to have the ability to bring over the turbines, which requires agreements with local municipalities to cross specific fields.

What is your take on the future of Poland’s renewable energy sector, and how is Mashav Energia planning to expand its operations in the country?

Poland’s renewable energy sector has seen significant growth over the past few years, and we expect this trend to continue in the coming years. The Polish government has set ambitious targets for the development of renewable energy, which bodes well for the sector. We are keen to expand our operations in Poland by continuing to develop our existing projects and exploring new opportunities in the sector. Our company is committed to delivering clean energy solutions to Poland, and we believe that our experience and expertise in the field will enable us to make a significant contribution to the country’s renewable energy goals.

Could you provide an update on the progress of the construction of Potegowo Wind Farm and whether it will be completed as planned by mid-2020?

We are actually ahead of schedule in building the Potegowo Wind Farm and we are optimistic that we will have all 81 turbines installed by the deadline. This project is a huge accomplishment for us to have developed such a significant farm.

The Potegowo Wind Farm is unique in Poland in terms of its size. What motivated you to undertake such a significant project?

Our decision to develop the Potegowo Wind Farm was motivated by lessons learned from our past experiences in the renewable energy market. We realized that in order to be sustainable, we needed to pursue large projects. Although the market is fragmented, we found that administrative burdens for small wind farms are the same as those for large ones. By going big, we were able to reduce operational costs by concentrating our resources more efficiently. Large projects are also considered strategic, which is an added benefit when approaching suppliers and investors.

You mentioned that the project initially had no state support. How have you been able to finance it?

Our business plan was designed to not rely on public support, but in October, the government announced an auction, which we ended up winning. This made our financing scheme easier to secure. We currently work with five different banks and had been in discussions with all of them prior to winning the auction.

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