Canada Funds Refinance German OWF

Laxman Pai
Tuesday, February 18, 2020

The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments) has refinanced its minority interest in the 609MW Hohe See and Albatros offshore wind farm complex in the German North Sea.

Amsterdam Capital Partners (Amscap) advised CPP Investments on the EUR 510.6 million green bond refinancing, said a statement.

The refinancing follows CPP Investments’ acquisition of 49% of Enbridge Inc’s (Enbridge) original 49.89% ownership in the two projects, which Enbridge in turn acquired from EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg AG (EnBW) in 2017.

In total, over EUR 510 million of senior secured notes were issued yesterday and placed with 18 institutional lenders in Europe led by the Talanx Group. The notes, which were rated BBB+ by Scope Ratings, attracted strong interest from the market. The notes were structured to qualify as green bonds under CPP Investments’ Green Bond Framework.

Michael van der Heijden, Managing Director of Amscap, said: “This is only the fourth project bond financing in the offshore wind sector and Amscap is very proud to have successfully structured, executed and placed this in the market. Not least in light of the short timelines: the entire process with the lenders, from inception to financial close, including due diligence, negotiating the documentation and in parallel obtaining the investment grade rating, was done in less than 6 months.”

“We have found partners in CPP Investments and Amscap who possess exceptional international expertise and reputation in the area of large-scale infrastructure investments. We are consistently driving our strategy forward with the aim of further enhancing and diversifying the proportion of infrastructure assets in our investment portfolio,” said Peter Brodehser, Head of Infrastructure Investments at Talanx.

Amscap has advised CPP Investments since June 2019 on this refinancing and managed the transaction in close cooperation with CPP Investments’ team in Canada.

Quentin Le Noac’h, Investment Manager at Amscap, said “With three sponsors involved, structuring the refinancing to make it fit within the existing governance arrangements was a key element necessary to get the lenders comfortable with the transaction. Despite the complexity we managed to put an attractive package together for both CPP Investments and the lenders.”

Hohe See and Albatros, with a combined capacity of 609MW, is Germany’s largest offshore wind power plant, located in the North Sea approximately 100 kilometers north of Borkum. In total, 87 SGRE-7.0-154 wind turbine generators were installed on monopile foundations over an area of approximately 53 square kilometers.

Both Hohe See and Albatros are fully installed and connected to the grid, now generating approximately 2,500 GWh of electricity annually, enough clean energy to power around 710,000 homes. Hohe See and Albatros were developed by EnBW.

CPP Investments was further advised by Clifford Chance and Dentons (legal), KPMG (tax), DWPF (model audit) and Pöyry (markets). The lenders were advised by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (legal), Everoze (technical) and Aon (insurance).

Categories: People & Company News Finance Wind Power Offshore Wind

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