The UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) today announced a £58.6 million investment in the world's largest offshore wind farm - London Array.
The investment will refinance a significant portion of Masdar's 20% equity stake in the project.
GIB's senior debt commitment is being made alongside co-lenders: The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd; KfW IPEX-Bank GmbH; Siemens Bank GmbH; and, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.
The capital released from this refinancing will be reinvested into the UK offshore wind sector, by Masdar. The total investment is £266 million.
Shaun Kingsbury, chief executive, UK Green Investment Bank, said:
The UK has taken an early lead in realising the promise of offshore wind. A number of domestic and international parties have moved quickly to develop and construct several of the world's largest offshore wind farms which are now operating efficiently and profitably in our waters.
The UK Government has ambitions to go further and to see the development of new projects. For that to happen it is important that those best placed to take early stage development and construction risk can get their money out of operating assets and reinvest it.
GIB's investment in London Array is the third example of our investment strategy to develop a secondary market in operating assets; enabling utility developers to recycle their capital into new offshore wind construction projects.
London Array is a 630MW operational wind farm off the coast of Kent, England. It is the largest operating offshore wind project in the world, and was inaugurated by David Cameron, UK Prime Minister, on 4 July 2013. It is owned by DONG (50%), E.ON (30%) and Masdar (20%). Over its lifetime London Array is expected to save 8.5 million tonnes CO2e.
This is GIB's third investment in offshore wind operating assets. This is a strategy designed to achieve two objectives:
- To demonstrate the attractiveness of investments in operating assets to domestic and international investors with the aim of crowding-in additional new capital; and
- To release capital back into the development and construction phase of new projects.
GIB's other investments in offshore wind to date are Walney and Rhyl Flats. This takes GIB's investment in UK offshore wind to £162 million.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said:
London Array is an impressive project which has helped the UK earn its position as leading the way in the development of offshore wind. This announcement by the UK Green Investment Bank is an example of how this new institution is helping to attract new capital from around the world and promoting additional private investment into this important sector.
Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, CEO of Masdar, said:
Reaching financial close on a project of this scale and complexity marks another milestone in Masdar's dedication to breaking new ground within the renewable energy sector. London Array is delivering half a million UK homes with clean energy and further reinforcing the UAE's position as a responsible and diversified energy supplier. Masdar is actively engaged in exploring new investment opportunities in the UK's growing renewable energy market, especially in the offshore wind sector.
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Notes to editors
UK Green Investment Bank (GIB)
The UK Green Investment Bank was launched in November 2012. With £3.8 billion of funding from the UK Government, it is the first bank of its kind in the world. It is a "for profit" bank, whose mission is to accelerate the UK's transition to a greener economy, and to create an enduring institution, operating independently of Government.
Masdar is Abu Dhabi's renewable energy company advancing the development, commercialisation and deployment of clean energy technologies and solutions. The company serves as a link between today's fossil fuel economy and the energy economy of the future. Backed by the Mubadala Development Company PJSC, the strategic investment company of the government of Abu Dhabi, Masdar is dedicated to the Emirate's long-term vision for the future of energy.