Weekly Intelligence Brief: March 29 – April 4

UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) has raised £463m of capital at first close, which has given a major boost for offshore wind projects

Boost for offshore wind sector

In a major boost for offshore wind projects in the UK, UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) has raised £463m of capital at first close.

GIB, via its FCA regulated subsidiary, UK Green Investment Bank Financial Services (GIBFS), has completed the first stage of fundraising, out of its planned £1b fund to invest in operating offshore wind farms. Investors include UK pension funds and a sovereign wealth fund. Further details weren’t shared. GIB is also investing £200m in the fund. This is the first private capital to be managed by the GIB group.

GIB has chosen to transfer its investments in two operating assets into the fund, which will produce immediate cash yield for investors.

These assets include: Rhyl Flats, a 90 MW, 25-turbine wind farm operated by RWE Innogy UK off the coast of North Wales. GIB has sold its full 24.95% equity stake in the project to the Fund; Sheringham Shoal, a 317MW, 88-turbine wind farm operated by Statkraft and located in the Greater Wash area off the coast of Norfolk. GIB has sold its full 20% equity stake in the project to the fund.

Other than this development, GIB also invested in 22 projects, committing £723m to projects with a total value of £2.5b during the year 2014/15.

Milestone for Grand Bend Wind Project

Independent power producer Northland Power has announced the closing of project financing for the Grand Bend Wind Project.

The 100 MW project is located near Grand Bend, Ontario. Construction on the project is underway, with commercial operation expected in the first half of next year.

As per the information available, all of the equity contributed to the project and all debt required for the project is now fully committed by the project lenders. Approximately 85% of the project's required financing has been provided via approximately $326 million of non-recourse senior secured construction and term debt private placement.

The project is a 50/50 partnership between Northland and Giiwedin Noodin FN Energy, which was created to hold the equity interest of the Aamjiwnaang First Nation and Bkejwanong Territory (Walpole Island First Nation) in the project.

DEME to develop MEG I offshore wind farm

DEME Concessions has signed a deal with Nordsee Offshore MEG I to co-develop the 400 MW MEG I offshore wind farm in the German North Sea.

MEG I will be one of Germany’s largest offshore wind farms and is located in the German Bight, circa 45 km north of Borkum.

DEME will participate in the further development of the wind farm until financial close. Afterwards, DEME will be involved in the construction and maintenance of the wind farm and its long term funding.

Prysmian Group bags €230 million contract

50Hertz Offshore, a subsidiary of 50Hertz Transmission, transmission grid operator in Germany, has chosen Prysmian Group to design, produce and install a power cable system for the offshore wind park cluster West of Adlergrund in the German Baltic Sea.

The contract is worth €230 million.

The project scope comprises the design, supply and installation of multiple high voltage submarine cable systems, now including this additional connection, between planned Offshore Wind Parks, around 40 km north-east of the island of Ruegen, to the Lubmin substation in North East Germany (and consequently with the mainland electricity grid) along a route of approximately 90 km (submarine) and 3 km (land).

The award comes as a result of 50Hertz exercising an option for a further grid connection already provided for in the existing contract for the West of Adlergrund project - that was originally worth €480 million effective immediately with options for further grid connections to be activated separately - when secured by Prysmian in May last year.

DNV GL awards type certification for V164-8.0 MW

Classification group DNV GL has granted MHI Vestas Offshore Wind type certification for the V164-8.0 MW.
The certification acknowledges conformity with standards for the design, testing and manufacturing of the turbine.

MHI Vestas Offshore Wind, a joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, is set to initiate serial manufacturing of the 32 V164-8.0 MW turbines. This is planned for the 258 MW Burbo Bank Extension project to be installed of the coast of Liverpool Bay in the U. K. next year.


MHI Vestas Offshore Wind secures contract

MHI Vestas Offshore Wind has strengthened ties with Danish company Storebælt. The company has bagged an extension of the service contract at the 21 MW Sprogø offshore wind power plant in Denmark.

The contract extends the cooperation between two companies by three years with the option to extend the contract for a further year.

The Sprogø site has been under a service contract with MHI Vestas Offshore since installation in 2009.

The company shared that since installation, availability at Sprogø has averaged over 98 percent year on year. Also, no main components have been exchanged.