Gilbert + Tobin (G+T) has advised the lenders (Natixis, ING Bank (Australia), MUFG Bank and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation) to commercial renewable energy provider ENGIE Australia & New Zealand (ENGIE), on a A$257 million financing and debt service facility as part of the refinancing of the 119MW Willogoleche wind farm in South Australia.

The refinancing was undertaken as part of the establishment of ENGIE’s new Australian renewable energy portfolio. The Willogoleche wind farm will be the first operational asset in the portfolio, with further wind and solar projects in development. The new portfolio is a joint investment between ENGIE, Mitsui and Infrastructure Capital Group (ICG), with ICG acquiring a 75% stake.

G+T also advised on the initial project financing of the Willogoleche wind farm in 2017.

G+T was able to leverage its existing knowledge of the asset to fast-track the new lending group’s legal due diligence and review of the refinancing documentation, which allowed ENGIE to align the refinancing timeline with ICG’s investment in the renewable energy portfolio.

Lead partner Simon Lynch commented: “We were pleased to assist ENGIE with this important refinancing by drawing on our significant experience refinancing renewable energy assets to negotiate and successfully implement a facility structure that gives ENGIE the flexibility to operate the asset post-construction, whilst maintaining a robust lending position for the new lending group.”

Simon was supported by lawyers William McCann, Hannah Bragge and graduate Ali Al Ebrahimi.

ENGIE was advised by Herbert Smith Freehills on the refinancing.

Gilbert + Tobin’s Banking + Infrastructure team is recognised in the leading legal directories, including most recently being ranked at Band 1 for Banking and Finance – Acquisition Finance by Chambers Asia-Pacific 2020. In the IFLR1000 Specialists Guide 2019, G+T are recognised for work in Unitranche financings, the only Australian firm to be recognised. G+T has significant experience advising leading Australian and international financial institutions, investment banks, corporations and private equity funds. We act for lenders, borrowers, sponsors and consortia on a range of issues from high-value corporate transactions to complex restructuring projects.

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