Norton Rose Fulbright advises on financing of Eavor's innovative geothermal heating project

Global Press release - Business May 2024

Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised a consortium of the European Investment Bank (EIB), Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), ING Bank N.V. (ING) and Mizuho Bank, Ltd (Mizuho) on the financing of the innovative geothermal heating project Eavor-LoopTM in the German state of Bavaria by loan facilities of up to 130 million euros. The Canadian technology company Eavor is using its closed-loop technology for the first time on a commercial scale in the project in the town of Geretsried.

Part of the financing of the first commercial-scale Eavor-LoopTM is being built with the additional support of a 91.6 million euros grant from the EU Innovation Fund. The EIB loan comes with a guarantee by the European InvestEU-programme. The project is co-financed by JBIC, ING Bank N.V. ING and Mizuho and is insured by Japan's Export Credit Agency, Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI). It qualifies as a green loan in accordance with the Loan Market Association’s Green Loan Principles.  

In contrast to conventional geothermal heating, the Eavor-LoopTM technology does not capture heat from subsurface water or steam reservoirs. Instead, the company drills deeply into the earth and harvests the heat directly from underground rocks. The Eavor-LoopTM system resembles a giant underground radiator. Two vertical wells are drilled to a depth of 4 500 to 5 000 metres. Then 12 pairs of horizontal laterals, 3 000 to 3 500 metres long, are drilled from the bases of each of the two wells, for a total of about 90 kilometres of drilling (about 320 to 360 kilometres for four loops). The giant radiator is then filled with fluid.

"Geothermal energy is one of the most important and still underutilised renewable energy sources. The EavorLoop technology avoids some of the risks associated with conventional geothermal projects and therefore has the potential to be a game changer in heat supply. The issues associated with the novelty of the technology in combination with the financing by international institutions with different requirements was and remains an exciting challenge for the entire team," comments the responsible partner Dirk Trautmann.

The Norton Rose Fulbright team was led by Munich partner Dirk Trautmann (lead, financing/energy and infrastructure projects, Head of Infrastructure Europe). He was supported by partners Dr Klaus Bader (Munich, Corporate / M&A, Head of Energy Europe), Dr Valerian von Richthofen (Düsseldorf, Energy and Infrastructure Projects, Head of Infrastructure Europe). Valerian von Richthofen (Düsseldorf, energy law), Michael Jürgen Werner (Brussels, state aid and antitrust law), Colin Rice (Singapore, hedging) and Akihiko Takamatsu (Japan, financing), counsel Timothy Nelmes (Munich, financing), senior associates Matthias Zimmermann (Munich, financing), Sebastian Eisenhut (Munich, Corporate / Due Diligence) and Mai Tezuka (Japan, Financing), as well as associates Benedict Schiller (Munich, Due Diligence / Financing), Sebastian Jeschke (Munich, Financing), Sebastian Gerber (Brussels, State Aid) and MaximVakhromov (Singapore, Hedging).

The Norton Rose Fulbright team provided comprehensive advice on reviewing and commenting on the project documents (permits, project contracts) and drafted and negotiated the complex financing agreements.

Norton Rose Fulbright's Energy team is one of the largest in the world; the German team in Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich is fully integrated into the global network. Norton Rose Fulbright is one of the global market leaders in energy law, not least because of its award-winning advice in connection with clean energy projects and climate change.

The European Investment Bank (ElB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union, owned by its Member States. It finances sound investments that contribute to EU policy objectives. EIB projects bolster competitiveness, drive innovation, promote sustainable development, enhance social and territorial cohesion, and support a just and swift transition to climate neutrality. The EIB Group, which also includes the European Investment Fund (EIF), signed a total of €88 billion in new financing for over 900 projects in 2023. These commitments are expected to mobilise around €320 billion in investment, supporting 400,000 companies and 5.4 million jobs. All projects financed by the EIB Group are in line with the Paris Climate Accord.

The Japan Bank for International Cooperation is a public financing institution and export credit agency based in Tokyo, which is wholly owned by the Japanese government. Its core business is financing, equity investments and guarantees. JBIC's mission is to contribute to the sound development of Japan and the international economy and society.

ING Bank N.V. is a wholly owned subsidiary of ING Groep, the largest listed financial group in the Netherlands, headquartered in Amsterdam. ING Groep shares are listed in Amsterdam, Brussels and New York. Around 60,000 employees serve over 38 million private and business customers as well as financial institutions in more than 40 countries.

Mizuho Bank is a leading global bank headquartered in Tokyo. Mizuho has one of the largest customer bases in Japan and an extensive international network covering financial and business centres around the world.

Eavor (pronounced “Ever”) is a technology-based energy company led by a team dedicated to creating a clean, reliable, and affordable energy future on a global scale. Eavor’s solution (Eavor-Loop™) represents the world’s first truly scalable form of clean, dispatchable, baseload capable, and flexible heat and power. Eavor achieves this by mitigating or eliminating many of the issues that have traditionally hindered geothermal energy. Eavor has been supported by equity investments made by several leading global energy producers, investors, developers, and venture capital funds including Vickers Venture Partners, bp Ventures, Chubu Electric Power, BDC Capital, Temasek, BHP Ventures, OMV, the Canada Growth Fund, Kajima Corporation, and the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund.

Eavor was supported in the project financing by Green Giraffe Advisory as financial advisor and Watson Farley Williams as legal advisor.


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