AYALA-LED AC Energy Philippines, Inc. (ACEPH) is set to partner with the Philippine energy unit of Japan-based Marubeni Corp. to build a diesel-fired plant in Rizal.

On Thursday, ACEPH told the stock exchange that it signed a shareholders’ deal with Axia Power Holdings Philippines Corp., which will buy half of both shares and economic rights in Ingrid Power Holdings, Inc., the Ayala unit’s corporate vehicle of the 150-megawatt Ingrid power plant project in Pililla, Rizal.

It also agreed to provide 5% of the economic rights in the project to ACE Endevor, Inc., one of its subsidiaries, while the company will hold the remaining 50% of the shares and 45% of the economic rights.

The Rizal plant will supply peaking and reserve power to the Luzon grid. It is expected to go online in the first quarter of 2021.

The joint venture has yet to secure the approval of the Philippine Competition Commission.

It was not the first time that the Ayalas teamed up with the Marubeni unit. They had jointly run the coal-fired power plants of South Luzon Thermal Energy Corp. in Batangas until AC Energy bought Axia’s stake in the project in November 2019.

In October last year, ACEPH, formerly Phinma Energy Corp., acquired the shares of AC Energy, Inc. in ACE Endevor, which is then AC Energy Development, Inc., and Ingrid Power, in a share-swap agreement.

Later in December, the listed energy company infused P570 million into Ingrid for the construction of the said power generator.

Shares in ACEPH fell 2.61% to close at P2.24 each on Thursday. — Adam J. Ang