Teams from Magic Circle firms Allen & Overy (A&O) and Linklaters have advised on the financing for the development of one of the world’s largest offshore windfarms, the Dudgeon windfarm off the east coast of England.
A&O acted for the mandated lead arrangers on the £1.3bn long-term financing of the windfarm, which is currently under construction 32km out to sea from the north Norfolk coastline.
Those arrangers include the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, BNP Paribas Fortis SA/NV; Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank; KfW IPEX-Bank, Mizuho Bank, Abbey National Treasury Services, (trading as Santander Global Corporate Banking), Siemens Bank, Société Générale and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.
Dudgeon is being developed by the Norwegian oil & gas company Statoil, which has a 35% stake; Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company Masdar, which also has a 35% share; and Norway’s state-owned electricity company Statkraft which owns the remainder. These parties were advised by Linklaters, with a team led by projects partner John Pickett
A&O’s team was led by Chris Andrew and included partner Sheila Connell. Andrew labelled the deal ‘a landmark transaction’ because it is the first UK offshore wind project to obtain financing under the UK government’s new ‘Contract for Difference’ regime.
He added: ‘Detailed preparatory work meant financing on this project was nevertheless executed very quickly.’
While Magic Circle firms have been affected by a drop off in project finance work, Linklaters and A&O are the dominant firms in the market, with A&O controlling 10% of the market between January 2012 and December 2014, according to Dealogic.
Read more about project finance in the City in: ‘Price of debt – austerity and the plight of a project finance partner.’