- The bond (U.S. Private Placement or USPP), in the amount of US$253 million, is the largest solar PV private placement issued for PV solar energy in Latin America to date. Investors from the U.S., Europe, and Asia participated in the bond..
Enertis, a leading global consulting and engineering company in the renewable energy sector, carried out a due diligence for DNB Markets (« DNB ») and Atlas Renewable Energy (« Atlas ») for the financing of two Atlas solar plants in the north of Chile, specifically located in the regions of Atacama and Antofagasta.
The US$253 million private bond placement, in which DNB acted as sole placement agent was issued by Atlas subsidiaries for the refinancing of an existing PV plant (Javiera) and for the construction of a new solar plant (Sol del Desierto). Both projects have been combined under the same innovative financing, which provides investors with unique structuring benefits and cash flow enhancing synergies. In addition, the bond received an investment grade rating (BBB-) by Fitch Ratings (including the construction period of one of the projects) and has been certified as a green bond under the Green Finance Framework developed by Atlas.
Prior to the issuance of the bond, Enertis carried out a due diligence to analyse the technical risks associated with both projects. On one hand, the Javiera 70 MWp solar plant, that has been operational for five years, stands out for being one of the first utility scale plants built in Chile and for its prime location – as it is surrounded by hills, which allows the solar plant to take advantage of the morning dew, making it easier to clean. The Sol del Desierto plant, a 244MWp project currently under construction, is one of the largest photovoltaic projects in Chile and one of the first to use bifacial modules.
The work carried out by Enertis involved design review, permits and project contracts, as well as the production study and field visits. Enertis is currently supervising the construction of Sol del Desierto and the operation of Javiera on behalf of the financial institutions.
As Aitor Ilundain, Country Manager of Enertis Chile and responsible for Enertis business in South America put it “It has been a pleasure to work with DNB and Atlas in this project. Now that the first payment has been made, the success of the placement is solid proof of the scope of the operation and of the importance of both plants for the Chilean market”.