Lightsource bp, a solar project developer, closed a A$540 million (~$365 million) portfolio green financing package to help execute its 425 MW Wellington North and 90 MW Wunghnu solar farms located in New South Wales and Victoria, Australia.
The funding was provided by Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ), ING Group, Mizuho, Norddeutsche Landesbank, and Westpac.
Combining its Wellington, West Wyalong, and Woolooga projects, Lightsource bp now has over 1 GW of generating capacity in construction and operation in Australia, enough to power over 350,000 homes.
Gransolar, the engineering, procurement, and construction company for the projects, began work under the early agreements in August 2022, and the commercial operation of the projects is expected in 2024.
The debt package was structured as a green financing loan with ANZ, ING, and Westpac as the ‘Joint Green Loan Co-ordinators.’ The company has entered into a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Boral, the construction material company, in addition to the previously announced PPAs with ENGIE, Orica, and Mars Australia.
The financing has helped make Lightsource bp the leading solar developer and owner in Australia on a capacity basis.
“Lightsource bp’s development of two important solar assets supports Australia’s energy transition and will boost critical energy supply. Greenfield renewable projects align with ANZ’s strategy and target of funding and facilitating A$100 billion of sustainable solutions for customers by 2030,” said Aaron Ross, Head of Project and Export Finance, ANZ Banking Group.
The company is also exploring other investment opportunities in the sector, including the co-location of wind, battery storage, and integration with green hydrogen production.
Lightsource bp was advised on the projects by KWM and White and Case.
Earlier this year, the company closed an R$800 million (~$150.66 million) financing for its 210 MW of Milagres Solar project in Brazil. Banco do Brasil provided R$423 million (~$79.66 million) in debt financing through the Northeast Development Fund.
According to Mercom’s 9M and Q3 2022 Solar Funding and M&A Report, the large-scale project funding in the first nine months (9M) of 2022 came to $22.8 billion in 128 project funding deals, a 97% increase compared to $11.6 billion in 138 projects in 9M 2021.