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PARF acquires first greenfield project

PARF acquires first greenfield project

A wind farm being developed in western NSW has been confirmed to be the first greenfield project that will be acquired by the Powering Australian Renewables Fund (PARF).

Firms: Herbert Smith Freehills and Allens (AGL Energy Limited); King & Wood Mallesons (QIC and Future Fund)

Deal: A joint venture between AGL Energy Limited (AGL), GE and CATCON has won the tender to develop the Silverton Wind Farm.

Value: $450 million

Area: Energy and resources, environment and planning, M&A

Key players: The HSF team advising AGL regarding the tender was led by partners Kris Percy (pictured) and Toby Anderson. Partner Peter Briggs also worked on the land aspects of the deal.

Special counsel Kristie Richards, senior associate Darren Bick and solicitors Amelie Fillion, Richard Burgess and Elise Bulla assisted with the deal.

The Allens team advising AGL in relation to its PARF interest was led by partners Kate Axup and Michael Ryan.

The KWM team advising QIC Global Infrastructure Fund and the Future Fund in relation to their PARF interest was led by partners Craig Rogers, Roderick Smythe and Shannon Etwell, with support from solicitors Javad Asghari, Josh Thorneycroft, Heather Kirkup and Jahan Navidi.

Deal significance:

Construction of the new Silverton Wind Farm project in the Barrier Ranges of western NSW is expected to be completed by mid-2018. It is the first greenfield project to be acquired by the Powering Australian Renewables Fund (PARF).

Supported by a five-year power purchase agreement with AGL, the wind farm will generate approximately 780,000 MWh of energy annually.

HSF advised AGL on the delivery, planning and land aspects of the Silverton project. Together with GE and CATCON, AGL won the engineering, procurement and construction contract for the 200MW wind farm, with the development cost totalling approximately $450 million.

HSF also advised financiers on the debt facility for the project.

HSF lead partner Kris Percy said the AGL team worked “unbelievably hard to reach this milestone”.

“It was fantastic to work so closely with them. Achievement of financial close was due to a huge level of work and commitment from all involved. We are really looking forward to seeing this landmark wind farm constructed and operating,” Mr Percy said.

The PARF, worth $2-3 billion, is a partnership between AGL, QIC and the Future Fund for the development of approximately 1,000MW of large-scale renewable energy projects.

KWM previously advised QIC and Future Fund in relation to the establishment of the PARF. According to a statement released by the firm, the PARF is an “innovative financing platform” established to invest in large-scale renewable energy assets and projects.

In 2016 AGL provided $200 million in equity funding for the PARF, with QIC, on behalf of its clients the Future Fund and the QIC Global Infrastructure Fund, providing $800 million.

KWM partner Roderick Smythe said the firm was pleased to continue to assist with the expansion of the PARF’s renewable energy portfolio.

“The latest transaction shows the strength of the PARF model, and we look forward to assisting PARF to meet its objective of investing in 1,000MW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2020,” Mr Smythe said.

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