2 February 2012
Watson, Farley & Williams (“WFW”), a leading international law firm is pleased to announce that it has advised Jæren Energi AS on the financing, construction and operation of the second phase of the Høg-Jæren EnergiPark onshore wind farm located to the south of Stavanger, Norway. Jæren Energi A/S is a project company established to develop the wind farm and is majority owned by Eurus Energy, which in turn is jointly owned by Toyota Tsusho Corporation and Tokyo Electric Power Company.
Høg-Jæren EnergiPark was the first wind farm to be project financed in Norway and WFW advised on the first phase, which was completed in February 2011. The project comprises a global sponsor group and cross-border project finance facilities provided by a club of international banks and the Danish Export Credit Agency. The sponsor group comprises Dutch, German and Norwegian shareholders with funding from Dutch and Norwegian banks in addition to a grant award from the Norwegian State energy fund (Enova SF) with the approval of the European state aid surveillance agency. A multi-national group of advisers supported the second phase financing including English, Norwegian and Swiss lawyers and Scottish financial adviser Quayle Munro.
Jæren Energi A/S successfully defended its right to develop phase two of the project in the Norwegian Supreme Court in May 2011. An additional six Siemens wind turbines with a total installed capacity of 13.8MW will be constructed, increasing the total installed capacity of the wind farm to 73.6MW. Phase two of the project reached documentary close on 25 January 2012 and is expected to reach financial close by mid-February 2012, securing a further c €16m project finance facilities to part fund the phase two construction costs together with a combination of additional shareholder equity and an increased subsidy from Enova SF. The total cost for the construction and development of phase two is c €30m, bringing a total cost for the project of c €170m.
The wind farm benefits from a favourable geographic location close to the coastline and a high wind regime. Phase one of the project became operational in September 2011 and construction of the second phase of the wind farm will commence in April 2012, with the additional turbines anticipated to become fully operational in December 2012.
Mark Lawson, a partner in the Energy group, led the team for Watson, Farley & Williams alongside associates Ian Fairclough, Victoria Barkas and Tom Guilfoyle.
Mark Lawson, a partner in the Energy group comments: “The availability of financing in the currently constrained and jittery credit market is evidence of the strong relationships established during phase one of the project, the continued loyalty and support shown by the banks and EKF to the project, and their confidence in Eurus Energy.”