By Chamber Press Office, 11 August 2023
Irish Solar Energy Company PCRE Announces €125m in Funding to Build 230 MW of Solar Assets in Ireland backed by AIB & LBP
€125,000,000 project finance facilities secured by Irish IPP Power Capital Renewable Energy to construct over 230 MW of solar assets in Ireland.
The deal was financed by AIB and French Bank LBP, and will create up to 400 new jobs during construction.
Power Capital Renewable Energy, Ireland’s leading solar Independent Power Producer (IPP), today announces the closing of two greenfield project finance transactions with a club of lenders composed of Allied Irish Bank (AIB) and La Banque Postale (LBP), for an aggregate commitment of €125,000,000 in bank facilities.
Proceeds from the first of the agreed financing packages will be used to fund a portfolio of solar projects across counties Cork, Louth and Meath with an aggregate capacity of 150 MW and supported by long-term Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) with Microsoft. The facilities from the second financing will go towards the construction of a single solar farm of 85 MW located in county Wexford, which benefits from a long-term PPA with another undisclosed technology company. All projects are already under construction and are expected to be commissioned over the next 9 months.
Power Capital was successfully awarded a 15-year subsidy support for 300 MW of solar projects in the 2022 Renewable Energy Support Scheme (RESS-2) auction. Power Capital is currently working on deploying a solar and battery storage pipeline of 5 GW in Ireland.
In January 2023, Power Capital secured €240,000,000 of construction equity facilities from a consortium of lenders managed by Eiffel Investment Group including Belgian insurance company Ethias and the European Investment Bank, which demonstrated the confidence that leading private and public lenders have in Power Capital’s strategy and capabilities. The facilities will support the IPP’s growth, at home and abroad.
Power Capital has also made advances in the United States, recently acquiring a development platform “Hawthorne Renewables”. This marks a significant milestone for the IPP as its first investment outside of the Irish market. The Phoenix-based team boasts a pipeline of 5 GW of solar and storage across three US markets in New Mexico, Oregon and Washington.
Justin Brown and Peter Duff, Co-CEOs and Founders of Power Capital Renewable Energy, said: “Securing €125m of funding from two major banks is a huge vote of confidence in the future of solar power and corporate power purchase agreements. We are delighted to begin construction on these projects which will employ up to 400 people and will boost the renewable energy footprint of Ireland’
Luis Duran from AIB’s Energy Climate Action and Infrastructure Team said: “Sustainability is a key strategic priority for AIB as we seek to help protect our fragile planet from the devastating impact of climate change by reducing our own carbon footprint and helping our customers to do the same. Having recently entered a Corporate PPA in respect of 80% of its own energy requirements, AIB seeks to ensure a greener tomorrow by backing those building it today and believes Irish Corporates have a fundamental role to play in leading this transition. We are delighted to back Power Capital Renewable Energy’s ambitious plans to construct a portfolio of solar projects in counties Cork, Louth, Meath and Wexford supported by long-term Corporate PPAs.’’
AIB acted as Co-Arranger, Lender, Hedging Bank, Issuing Bank, Account Bank and Agent for the transactions.
La Banque Postale acted as Co-Arranger, Lender and Hedging Bank along with AIB on the project financings.
Akereos Capital acted as exclusive debt advisor to Power Capital on the project financings, and also acted as exclusive financial advisor to Power Capital on the PPAs with Microsoft and the other undisclosed technology giant as well as exclusive M&A advisor on Power Capital’s acquisition of Hawthorne Renewables. Power Capital were advised by Arthur Cox, DLA Piper and Philip Lee (legal) while AIB and La Banque Postale were advised by A&L Goodbody.