Solar Ventus and Clydesdale Bank, part of the Virgin Money UK PLC group (the Group), have entered into a financing partnership which supports both the Group’s sustainability strategy and meets Solar Ventus’ objective of securing a tailored, long term, financing solution.
Solar Ventus owns and operates a portfolio of over 100 wind and solar projects located throughout the UK comprising a mix of turbines models including EWT, Vestas, WTN, Evance and Endurance. The projects have, on average, been fully operational for five years; all are supported by the UK Government backed Feed in Tariff subsidy regime. The portfolio generates enough renewable electricity to power more than 2,600 average UK homes, saving more than 4,400 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.
Clydesdale Bank provided a £15m limited recourse term loan, repayable over 13.5 years. The proceeds will be used by Solar Ventus, in part, to repay existing borrowings and to support further investments into renewable energy and sustainable technology.
Simon Morrish, primary sponsor of Solar Ventus said: “After a very frustrating experience with another lender, Clydesdale were able to pick up the portfolio and rapidly structure a bespoke package that worked for the diverse group of assets that we had in our portfolio to give a long term solution to our financing. They proved to be flexible and commercial in their approach to this deal.”
Keith Wilson, Head of Renewable Energy at Clydesdale Bank, said: “This was a competitive financing process; we are delighted Solar Ventus chose to work with us and that we were able to tailor and implement a financing solution which met their requirements. We look forward to our long term relationship with them.”
Clydesdale Bank was advised by CMS Cameron McKenna (legal), Locogen (technical) and Johnston Carmichael (model audit).
Solar Ventus was advised by Blake Morgan and Turcan Connell (legal) and EY (financial).
About Solar Ventus: Solar Ventus is a company set up in 2010 to build and operate renewable energy solutions to help the planet combat climate change. It has already produced over 53,528,100 kilo-watt hours of renewable energy replacing approx. 24,087 tonnes of CO2 that would otherwise have been released into the atmosphere.
About the Group: A key pillar of the Group’s sustainability strategy, as set out in the 2019 Annual Report, is protecting and nurturing the environment, of which its renewable energy lending activities are a key component. In January 2020 the Group became a signatory to the UN’s Global Principles of Responsible Banking. The Group is also developing a stretching benchmark for appraising businesses that are actively engaged in activities that advance the cause of environmental sustainability. It will target its activities such that, over a period of time, at least 5% of the business loan book will be directed towards businesses meeting the agreed benchmark.
Clydesdale Bank has been lending into the renewable energy sector for c.20 years, historically having focussed on wind, solar and hydro projects. It’s interests now also include anaerobic digestion, flexible generation, heat and merchant renewables.
We are delighted Solar Ventus chose to work with us and that we were able to tailor and implement a financing solution which met their requirementsKeith Wilson, Head of Renewable Energy at Clydesdale Bank