AES Solar, a joint venture of The AES Corporation (NYSE: AES) and Riverstone Holdings LLC, announced today that it has completed three financings totaling $752 million, including a project financing of a 266 megawatt (“MW”) solar photovoltaic (“PV”) power plant in the United States, a project financing of a 22.4 MW portfolio of three solar PV power plants in France and a corporate revolving credit facility for AES Solar. AES Solar’s global portfolio now totals more than 500 MW in operation or construction in seven countries, making AES Solar one of the world’s largest owners and operators of utility-scale, solar PV power plants. Note that references to MW are in direct current ("DC").
Last week, AES Solar completed financing for and began construction of the Mount Signal Solar project (also known as Imperial Valley Solar 1, or IVS1), a 266 MW utility-scale solar photovoltaic generating plant in Imperial County, California. The project is expected to be fully operational in early 2014, and it will sell its output to San Diego Gas & Electric Company pursuant to a long-term power purchase agreement. Mount Signal Solar was co-developed with 8minutenergy Renewables, LLC (“8minutenergy”) and represents the first of several fully-permitted projects in Imperial County that AES Solar is pursuing with 8minutenergy. The financing was structured in two tranches: 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.
"We are pleased to have begun construction of this important solar project. It is the first of several that we look forward to developing in the Imperial Valley," said Bob Hemphill, CEO of AES Solar. "This project doubles the size of our company’s portfolio and will provide electricity to over 65,000 homes in California."
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