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3 Major Takeaways from the Infocast Solar + Wind Finance & Investment Conference

From Assaf Nathan - Relationship Manager, International C&I - BHI

 

More than 3,000 participants from all across the growing renewable energy eco-system—sponsors, developers, equipment manufacturers, various service provides, legal and tax advisors, investors, brokers and lenders—descended upon Phoenix, AZ to attend the Infocast Solar + Wind Finance & Investment Conference.

 

Across the many conversations I shared with different participants, I noted a very optimistic outlook regarding the overall growth prospects of the sector.  Secular trends here are obviously a driving factor of the market’s trajectory, but in addition to those underlying fundamentals, I wanted to highlight certain financing structures that were brought up in conversations with colleagues, clients and prospects. 

I encourage operators to pay close attention to these structures and the opportunity to secure more flexible and favorable financing for your projects:

 

1. Transferability – the guidelines to transferability of clean energy tax credits under the Inflation Reduction Act were published in 2023 and opened new opportunities for financing renewable energy projects. Developers may access financing faster and can delay the cost and complexity associated with adding a tax equity partner.

2. Pre-NTP / COD financing – different financing solutions are available to developers before they reach Notice-to-Proceed (NTP), a requirement to qualify for Project Finance, or as a bridge to COD. Pre-NTP financing reduces the capital requirements from the developer which can be significant. Structures vary from what may resemble more of a corp. loan on one hand to PF like on the other. Bridging to COD could help the project enjoy a more favorable cost of capital at conversion.  

 

3. Corporate SBLC lines – these facilities, which are popular among BHI’s clients, allow developers to post Standby Letters of Credit instead of using cash collateral. The SBLCs are typically used at all stages of development, from Readiness LCs during the early stages to Interconnection and Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs). A PF facility can replace the Interconnection and PPA, freeing up capacity for new issuance of SBLCs.

 

Understanding and implementing these strategies are all aspects of a comprehensive playbook that we take into account at BHI to identify the optimal steps that our clients should take from early-stage development to fully operating assets. Our team is well positioned to support sponsors and developers through letters-of-credit facilities, revolvers, construction loans and mini-perms and continuously analyzing the best methods to execute on their behalf.

 

It was great to meet with current clients, who remarked on how validating it was to know that many of the creative solutions touted at the conference were strategies we’ve already implemented on their behalf.  And I appreciated the opportunity to connect with many new prospects who are eager to explore how BHI can help support their upcoming projects. 

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