Moody's Investors Service has assigned a rating to the roughly $545 million term loan B package that is in the market for the refinancing of Competitive Power Ventures' Woodbridge Energy Center gas-fired project in New Jersey, also known as CPV Shore.


The rating agency published its Ba2 rating for the senior secured loans on Dec. 5, shortly after PFR reported that the deal was in the market (PFR, 12/5).

Morgan Stanley is left lead on the deal, which comprises a $425 million seven-year term loan and $120 million five-year revolver. Crédit Agricole and MUFG are also on the deal as bookrunners.

The deal was launched on Nov. 30, amid choppiness in the leveraged finance market that has seen some deals pulled from syndication or postponed.

The project's owners—CPV, Toyota Tsusho Corp., Osaka Gas USA Corp. and John Hancock Life Insurance Co.—plan to use the proceeds to pay themselves a dividend as well as to refinance the existing debt, according to the Moody's report.

The rating is supported by the 725 MW project's competitive operating profile, says Moody's. It has operated at a roughly 80% capacity factor and with a heat rate below 6,900 Btu/kWh since January 2016.

The project's location in the "constrained" EMAAC region of PJM Interconnection is also to its advantage, note the credit analysts.

Contracts won in capacity auctions the project has cleared through May 2022 are expected to generate some $143 million in revenues and the project also has a five-year heat rate call option with an investment grade counterparty.

Price talk on the term loan is 350 to 375 basis points over Libor with a 0% index floor and an original issue discount in the range of 99 to 99.5. Commitments are due by Dec. 14.

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