AES Solar completes over $750 million worth of debt financing


The U.S. utility-scale solar company, a joint venture between The AES Corporation and Riverstone Holdings, LLC, has secured financing for its 266 MW Imperial Valley Solar 1 photovoltaic project, located in California’s Imperial Valley.

Expected to be fully operational in early 2014, construction on the plant also began last week. The generated electricity will be sold to San Diego Gas & Electric Company under a long-term PPA and should be enough to power over 65,000 homes.

The financing for the project, which is being developed along with 8minuteenergy was structured in two tranches, including a $416 million long-term institutional tranche led by Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC and Citigroup Global Markets, Inc. as Joint Lead Placement Agents and Rabo Securities USA, Inc. and DNB Markets Inc. as Co-Placement Agents; and a $220 million cash grant loan provided by Morgan Stanley Senior Funding and Citibank, N.A. Rabobank International and DNB Bank ASA also provided related letters of credit as part of the project financing.

AES Solar and 8minuteenergy are said to be working on several fully-permitted projects in the county.

Meanwhile, AES Solar closed an 18 year, $90 million multi-borrower, non-recourse financing with HSH Nordbank for 22.4 MW worth of completed projects in France. The projects consist of a 12 MW photovoltaic parking lot near Lyon, and an 8.7 MW parking lot and 1.7 MW ground-mounted plant, located near Toulouse.

Finally, the company closed a $26 million medium-term revolver with Goldman Sachs Bank USA to be used to provide both working capital and "additional financial flexibility".

Overall, AES Solar says it has 256 MW worth of photovoltaics in operation in the U.S., Italy, Spain, France, Bulgaria, India, and Greece. With the addition of the above-mentioned projects, its portfolio has increased to over 500 MW.