Four Bidder Shortlisted for Offshore Transmission Links (UK)


– Strong competition to own and operate over £1bn of high-voltage transmission links for three offshore wind farms

– Shortlist of bidders follows strong interest in the first round of tenders which attracted £4bn investment appetite

– Preferred bidders for links will be announced from autumn 2011

Ofgem E-Serve has today announced a short list of four bidders competing to own and run links to a further three offshore wind farms.

The shortlisted bidders for the second tender round are competing to own and run connections to the Gwynt y Môr, Lincs and London Array (phase 1) offshore wind projects. This follows strong competition for the first tender round which attracted almost £4 billion worth of investment appetite to own and operate £1.1 billion worth of links. The first round resulted in estimated savings of £350 million for offshore wind farms and ultimately consumers.

Ofgem E-Serve’s Managing Director, Commercial, Robert Hull, said: “The variety of firms competing to own these three links shows that the offshore transmission regime has again proved very successful at attracting investment into the offshore wind sector. Competitive tendering will ensure that these wind farms can be connected at a lower cost to customers.”

The following bidders have been shortlisted for all three projects in the second tender round:

– Balfour Beatty Equitix consortium (a consortium of Balfour Beatty Capital Ltd and Equitix Ltd)

– Blue Transmission (a consortium of Macquarie Capital Group Ltd, Barclays Infrastructure Funds Management Ltd and Mitsubishi Corporation)

– National Grid Offshore Limited

– Transmission Capital Partners (a consortium of Transmission Capital Partners Ltd and International Public Partnerships Ltd)

The shortlisted companies are bidding to become Offshore Transmission Owners (OFTOs) which will take over ownership of the links and receive a stable, regulated income for 20 years. Ofgem expects to announce the preferred bidders for the Lincs and London Array

(phase 1) projects in autumn 2011. The preferred bidder for Gwynt y Môr will be selected later than the bidders for the other two projects, as construction is not as far advanced.

Tenders for a further three projects in a follow up stage (Tranche B) to the second tender round – Humber Gateway, West of Duddon Sands and Race Bank – are expected to start next spring. In total these six projects represent around £2 billion of offshore transmission links connecting some 2.8 GW of offshore wind.

The news follows Ofgem’s announcement last month that Transmission Capital Partners has secured the first offshore transmission owner licence for the Robin Rigg wind farm. Robin Rigg was one of the projects in the first tender round.



Source: ofgem, April 28, 2011