SOFIAC, a company offering an innovative investment solution aimed at accelerating the energy transition and decarbonization of French companies, announces an investment of €60 million from Mirova, an affiliate of Natixis Investment Managers dedicated to sustainable finance, ADEME Investissement and Fondaction.

In order to achieve its climate objectives, France must proceed with the rapid decarbonization of its buildings and industry. Building operations represent 18% of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at the national level and 47% of French annual energy consumption: The sector’s GHGs will have to fall by about 45 MtCO2 by 2030 to meet France’s target decarbonization trajectory.1 On the industry side, France’s roadmap to fight climate change sets a GHG emission reduction trajectory of 35% by 2030 and 81% by 2050 compared to 2015.2

Originally designed in Quebec, Canada, by Econoler and Fondaction, SOFIAC supports companies in the tertiary and industrial sectors in their energy transition by taking charge of 100% of the investments required to increase the energy efficiency of their buildings, aiming to significantly reduce their energy expenditure and to achieve ambitious GHG reduction targets set out in their environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategy. In addition, SOFIAC offers to manage the entire development and management of projects: audit and modelling, selection and monitoring of technical agents in charge of the implementation of the project and the commissioning of equipment, training of staff, independent monitoring of performance. The support model proposed by SOFIAC allows companies to focus on their development while generating additional positive cash from the beginning of the partnership thanks to the energy savings achieved.

This €60 million investment aims to replicate SOFIAC’s success in Canada in France by structuring the company in the territory and developing an extensive network of contacts to serve as many projects as possible.

Christophe Béchu, Minister for Ecological Transition and Cohesion of the Territories, says: “France has set ambitious targets as part of its national low-carbon strategy: the building sector must reduce its GHG emissions by 49% and industry by 35% by 20303. The mobilization of private and public investors such as Mirova, ADEME Investissement and Fondaction is essential to achieve these objectives, and the financing of innovative solutions such as the one proposed by SOFIAC is a positive signal in favor of energy efficiency and decarbonization of businesses in our territories. This is also the meaning of the Integrated Future Investment Programme in France 2030, which aims to finance innovative infrastructure projects in the field of energy and ecological transition alongside private actors.”

Stéphane le Gentil, Director General of SOFIAC in France, comments: “SOFIAC was born from the desire to eliminate all financial, technical and operational obstacles faced by private companies in the development and implementation of energy efficiency and decarbonization projects. Thanks to the involvement of our financial partners, Mirova, ADEME Investissement and Fondaction, SOFIAC becomes the largest energy efficiency and decarbonization initiative for the private sector in France.”

Raphael Lance, Director of Energy Transition Funds at Mirova, adds: “We are delighted to make this investment a reality alongside ADEME Investissement and Fondaction, with whom we share the objective of making SOFIAC the reference investor partner for companies in France. Energy efficiency is a major driver of the energy transition and SOFIAC, with its success in Canada, has all the necessary assets to deploy its activity on the French market and thus contribute to the acceleration of the decarbonization of companies in the territory.”

Karine Mérère, Managing Director of ADEME Investissement, said: “Together, we are driving innovation to accelerate the deployment of energy efficiency projects in France. SOFIAC offers an integrated model that goes beyond the traditional third-party investment model and offers a turnkey solution to players wishing to accelerate their decarbonization. We are very pleased with this structuring partnership with Mirova and Fondaction, with whom we share a common vision for a more sustainable energy future.”

Marc-André Binette, Deputy Chief Investment Officer at Fondaction, and Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of Fondaction Asset Management continues: “We are very proud, as an investor and fund manager, to deploy this innovative and comprehensive solution on the French market. The SOFIAC model was developed in collaboration with Econoler and with the support of the Government of Quebec, has proven itself here, in Quebec and in Canada. Today, SOFIAC contributes to solving major environmental and societal challenges by aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

Pierre Langlois, President of Econoler concluded: “Econoler designed SOFIAC’s unique model based on its internationally recognized experience in designing financing mechanisms tailored to energy efficiency and the use of the performance contract. We are proud to see the SOFIAC model deployed in France today and we are delighted that French companies can benefit from it in order to accelerate their energy transition and decarbonization.”
Mirova is an affiliate of Natixis Investment Managers.
Portfolio management company   French Public Limited liability company
Regulated by AMF under n°GP 02 014
RCS Paris n°394 648 216
59, Avenue Pierre Mendes France – 75013 – Paris.

Natixis Investment Managers
Natixis Investment Managers is a subsidiary of Natixis.
Portfolio management company   French Public Limited liability company
RCS Paris n°453 952 681
43, Avenue Pierre Mendes France – 75013 – Paris.

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