Lightsource BP signs financing agreements on first Australian project with ING and EDC

Melbourne, 23rd October 2019 Lightsource BP today announced it has signed a senior debt facility with ING and EDC (Export Development Canada) to fund its first Australian solar project.

The 200MWp solar installation, near Wellington, NSW, is the largest single plant to be financed by Lightsource BP to date. It is also one of the first times that bifacial solar panels will be installed at this scale in Australia.

The funding partnership marks the start of a new relationship for Lightsource BP, ING and EDC and:

  • Backs Lightsource BP’s ambition to become a world leading owner and operator of solar assets,
  • Aligns with ING’s and EDC’s drive to finance sustainable companies,
  • Supports EDC’s objective to promote Canadian exports and Canadian foreign direct investments for companies of all sizes.

ING are underwriting two thirds of the financing with EDC funding the remaining third. NAB (National Australian Bank) will act as facility agent and security trustee on behalf of ING and EDC.

Construction is due to start shortly and will showcase next-generation Canadian Solar bifacial panels, alongside Array Technologies Inc. single axis tracking. This combination will allow Lightsource BP to operate the site to maximum efficiency and boost levels of energy production. It is a clear indication of the strength of the company’s supply chain and developmental expertise, as well as Lightsource BP’s ability to form strong partnerships with other industry leaders. The site will be one of the largest bifacial solar projects in Australia.

The majority of the electricity generated by the site will be sold by Lightsource BP to Snowy Hydro via a 15-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). With an installed capacity of 200MWp, it will produce approximately 435,000MWh of clean, renewable electricity a year. Enough energy to power approximately 72,500 homes and cut carbon emissions by 350,000 tonnes – the equivalent of taking around 121,500 cars off the road.

Michiel de Haan, Global Head of Energy for ING, commented: “We are delighted to support Lightsource BP on its first solar project in Australia. ING’s global energy sector expertise in combination with our local presence enables us to support our clients around the world in the markets they are active in. We are very pleased to start relations with ambitious and sustainable companies such as Lightsource BP and we are keen to support Lightsource BP on an ongoing basis on their global initiatives in the renewable energy space. The transaction contributes towards ING’s ambition to align our lending portfolio with the Paris Agreements goals and marks another milestone for our dedicated Energy team in Sydney.

Jean-Philippe Nolet, Director and Head of Renewables & Sustainable Technologies at EDC commented: “This is an important transaction for us because it supports Canadian Solar taking their market-leading technology to international markets and further strengthens EDC’s presence in Australia’s renewable sector. We’re equally pleased to be establishing a strong relationship with Lightsource BP as they continue to develop ground-breaking projects worldwide.”

Adam Pegg, Country Manager for Australia at Lightsource BP, commented: “This project is the first in the Australian pipeline to come to fruition, and is just the beginning of Lightsource BP’s ambition to be a leader in the Australian solar market. Our team is hard at work advancing a number of projects across the NEM. We’re proud to be pushing the low-carbon transition forward in this country, and to be contributing to the company’s wider goal of achieving 10GW of solar in the next five years.”

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