Octopus completes £344 million refinancing of UK onshore wind portfolio
Octopus Energy Investments (“OEI”), part of the Octopus Group and the largest non-utility investor in onshore renewables in the UK, is pleased to announce the completion of a £344 million refinancing of its UK onshore wind portfolio. It is one of the first long tenor, fully amortising facilities in the renewable energy sector to accommodate such flexibility to borrow against new assets.
The refinancing incorporates a flexible ‘accordion’ and additional debt features which allows for further assets to be brought into the deal whilst also permitting the inclusion of unsubsidised assets in the portfolio. This provides the ability to transact quickly and competitively in key target territories across Europe, allowing Octopus to continue to unlock investment into the next phase in the transition to a world powered by renewables.
The portfolio of wind assets, which Octopus acquired on behalf of its investors in a series of transactions between 2015 to 2017, includes seven sites across England and Scotland. The projects have a combined generation capacity of 230MW and were previously financed with six separate facilities.
The funding package was provided by 7 major banks: AIB Group (UK) plc, Banco Santander S.A., London Branch, Barclays Bank PLC, BNP Paribas Fortis S.A./N.V., Lloyds Bank plc, National Australia Bank Limited and National Westminster Bank Plc.
Matt Setchell, Head of Octopus Energy Investments, said:
“We are delighted to have finalised yet another milestone transaction which builds on the momentum generated by the successful deals we have completed over the last year. It also validates our strategy to develop strong relationships with a core group of highly-experienced lenders whose appetite in this space aligns well with our investors’ and our own growth ambitions. The willingness of banks to offer this degree of flexibility over such a long tenor is underpinned by the market leading expertise that we possess and our capability to acquire and manage high quality assets to an excellent standard.
“We have a strong pipeline of investments across multiple jurisdictions and this refinancing will provide us with the ability to progress towards our goal of unblocking barriers to renewables investment, driving the energy transition and creating an energy market in-line with climate change commitments.”
Octopus were advised by Linklaters as legal counsel and Santander UK plc as financial advisor. The lenders were advised by Ashurst as lenders counsel, RINA as technical advisor, Willis as insurance advisor, EY as model auditor and Baringa as market advisor.
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