WPD has received around NTD 195bn worth of bids in a roughly three times over-subscribed loan syndication for its 708MW Yunlin wind farm off the coast of Taiwan.
About 10-15 banks among the 30 banks that have signed up to the syndication are expected to be lead underwriters of the NTD 60bn (USD 1.92bn) syndicated loan, a source told Inframation. Among the 30 banks that submitted the bids, 20 banks are foreign ones and 10 are local lenders.
More foreign banks are expected to be lead arrangers while local ones, which are in general more conservative, will opt for sub-participation.
A banking group leading the syndication is expected to be formed by the mid to end of September, the source said. That will be followed by due diligence works conducted by the lenders and a financial close is scheduled for the end of December.
The Bremen-based wind developer, which is meanwhile seeking investors for up to 49% of equity of the Yunlin Wind Farm between the end of 2018 and early 2019, is also believed to have locked in at least three to five investors that have expressed strong interests in taking equity stakes.
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.
The Yunlin and Taoyuan projects are likely to require a total syndicated loan of around NTD 100bn.
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 in the syndication earlier this year.
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.