WPD expects 12-16 banks to participate in the NTD 60bn (USD 1.92bn) syndicated loan for its 708MW Yunlin Offshore Wind Farm off the coast of Taiwan, a company source told Inframation.
The source added that the developer has already talked with over 40 banks for the loan and is expecting foreign bank financing to account for a larger share of the syndication than local banks.
The German wind developer is meanwhile seeking to sell up to 49% of its equity stake in the Yunlin project by the end of the year — roughly the same time as planned financial close for the project.
But the source said the group is still in internal discussions over whether or how to carry out an equity stake sale for its second 350MW Taoyuan wind project off the coast of the island.
The 708 MW project is expected to cost about NTD 85bn, which might be 75% debt financed. The 360MW first phase of Yunlin is due to be commissioned in 2020, with the remainder due to be commissioned in 2021.
Inframation‘s sister publication Sparkspread has reported that the Bremen-based renewables firm last month issued a request for proposals to banks seeking to finance the 360 MW first phase of its 708 MW Yunlin offshore wind project last month. A source who has received the RfP said banks are invited to respond by the end of August.
The Yunlin and Taoyuan projects are likely to require a total syndicated loan of around NTD 100bn. One of the sources said interest rates for the loans are likely to be 1-1.5 percentage points higher than a comparable corporate loan.
In addition to Japan’s SMBC, WPD has also mandated Taiwan’s largest state-owned bank – Bank of Taiwan – as co-advisor and E.SUN Commercial Bank as local advisor in structuring the financing.
CTBC Bank (Chinatrust), Fubon Bank as well as Hua Nan Commercial Bank are also among lenders that have expressed their interest to join the loan syndication.
WPD secured a total of 708MW capacity for its Yunlin wind farm and 350MW for its Taoyuan project in the government’s selection in April. PPAs are expected to be signed with Taipower by the end of the year.