The UK Green Investment Bank (GIB), along with Japan’s Marubeni Corporation, has announced the “landmark refinancing” of a UK offshore wind project.
The 210 megawatt (MW) Westermost Rough project is being developed by DONG Energy. The company holds a 50% stake in the project whilst the GIB and Marubeni have revealed they are to refinance part of their 50% shareholding.
The GIB revealed plans for equity investments worth £461 million in offshore wind projects that will use “next generation” turbines manufactured by Siemens. Westernmost Rough was amongst those receiving the investment, it received around £500 million from GIB and Marubeni for a 50% stake.
The GIB, which is designed to encourage investment in low-carbon projects, and Marubeni have now signed an agreement with a consortium of lenders who will provide around £370 million of limited recourse senior debt. The lenders include the Japan Bank for International Cooperation, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Mizuho Bank, Siemens Financial Services and Societe Generale Corporate & Investment Banking.
Ed Northam, head of investment banking at GIB, said, “This is an important transaction in the development of offshore wind in the UK. In refinancing part of our 50% equity stake in the Westermost Rough project – jointly held with Marubeni – we have brought in a number of new, long-term financiers to the sector.
“Increasing the number of long-term debt providers in offshore wind is critical in both ensuring there is sufficient capital to finance new construction projects and lowering the cost of capital for the sector.”
According to the PA Consulting Group’s Energy Investment Map, published in June, the UK is a top performer in attracting wind energy investment, ranking sixth out of 30.
Photo: Kim Hansen via Flickr
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