Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised the UK Green Investment Bank, Lloyds Banking Group, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander, Siemens Bank and KFW on the refinancing of the facilities put in place by Dutch pension fund PGGM and Ampere Equity Fund in 2012, relating to their interest in the Walney offshore wind farms, off the coast of Cumbria.
The transaction sees an extension of the term and additional debt being made available on revised terms, with two original lenders exiting and KFW joining the lender group. The financing will continue to enable PGGM and Ampere Equity Fund, acting jointly through their investment vehicle OPW, to finance their stake in the wind farms. This transaction follows the firm’s work on the original financing of the project in 2012, which represented the first provision of debt finance by the UK Green Investment Bank.
Rob Marsh, partner, Norton Rose Fulbright, commented:
“This transaction illustrates the continued appetite for financing minority participations in large offshore wind farms and also demonstrates the increasing maturity of the sector, with the lenders making facilities available for a longer term than the original financing closed in 2012. Other projects financed on a “mini-perm” basisin and around this periodwill no doubt take note.”
Rob Marsh led the team advising the lenders, together with Doreen Tchan, Inga Aryanova, Tim Baines, James Carroll, Melusi Dlamini, Claudia Dorbez and Jim Jordan. Matt Hodkin assisted on tax, together with associate Alexandra Wood, while Daniel Franks and Tyson Neil advised on hedging.
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