Acciona has unveiled the full four-bank line-up behind an 18-year project finance loan for a 317.5 MW solar project that it co-owns in Sonora, Mexico.
The Spanish sponsor had assembled the club for the $264 million deal more than a year ago and construction on the project, named Puerto Libertad, began in February, but the signing of the loan was not announced until July 16.
PFR reported that the bank group included a European commercial bank and three development finance institutions, including Spain’s Istituto de Credito Oficial, in April 2017 (PFR, 4/10).
The participation of a European commercial bank was somewhat unexpected, given the long tenor and three-year merchant tail.
“When we started dealing with banks, our idea was that it was going to be close between development banks and Japanese banks, but it hasn’t been the case,” Acciona Energía México’s cfo, José Arteaga, told PFR last year. “When you see which bank it is, you will be even more surprised.”
The European commercial bank is Alicante, Spain-based Banco Sabadell, while the other development banks in the deal are the North American Development Bank and Mexico’s Banco Nacional de Obras y Servicios.
The debt is split “on an equal basis among the four entities,” according to the Acciona announcement.
Acciona and its 50:50 co-sponsor, Tuto Energy, have increased the size of the project twice since it won its first 180 MW offtake contract from the Comisión Federal de Electricidad in a September 2016 auction.
Under a second, private contract signed in 2017, the project will sell an additional 90 MW to a subsidiary of Tuto, Tuto Energy Trading. The end user of this generation is an undisclosed Mexican industrial group.
Since then, a further roughly 50 MW has been added to the project to be sold spot in the wholesale electricity market, according to the latest announcement.
“We are very pleased to have signed this finance agreement, which shows the confidence of the financial entities in our ability to complete and manage such an ambitious renewable project as this one, the biggest ever materialized by ACCIONA Energía,” said Miguel Angel Alonso, the ceo of the company’s Mexican subsidiary, in a statement.