On January 25, at the 2011 Project Finance International (PFI) Awards in London, England, representatives of Boralex Inc. (Boralex), Énergir Limited Partnership (Énergir) and Valener Inc. (Valener) accepted a prize for the $725 million financing of the first phase of the Seigneurie de Beaupré wind farms, which closed on November 8, 2011.
The financing won the Americas Renewables Deal of the Year award, standing out for its unique structure as well as for bringing in Canadian funds, atypical investors in this type of project financing. The PFI awards are part of the Thomson Reuters Awards for Excellence in recognition of corporate and individual success in the global financial sector.
It will be recalled that a tranche of $260 million of the financing is covered by a guarantee offered to the lenders by the Federal Republic of Germany through Euler-Hermes, its export credit agency.
“The support of Québec funds, usually absent in this type of financing, as well as that of foreign institutions, in the current tumultuous financial markets, reflect the exceptional character of our wind site, and also the quality and unique composition of our financing structure,” said Patrick Lemaire, President and Chief Executive Officer of Boralex, and Sophie Brochu, President and Chief Executive Officer of Énergir.
The original group of lenders is composed of: KfW IPEX-Bank, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Deutsche Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Landesbank Baden-Württemberg, Mizuho Corporate Bank, Siemens Financial and the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. Following the closing of the financing, three financial institutions joined the group of lenders: Investissement Québec, DZ Bank and AKA Bank, some of the original lenders having assigned a portion of their commitment.