CIT leads 50 MW battery storage finance for SCE

The project will deploy Tesla Energy’s Powerpack 2 lithium-ion battery system, which will be located at various large-load commercial, industrial and government host sites in Los Angeles and Orange counties. The fleet of storage banks will be used for utility grid services including flexible and reserve capacity, solar integration and voltage management in addition to retail energy services such as demand management, back up generation and enhanced power quality.

SCE, which is California’s second largest utility, will purchase capacity from the Macquarie-owned fleet of behind-the-meter, battery-based energy storage systems under 10-year capacity contracts to provide load reduction services as part of SCE’s plan to modernize the grid by 2022.

The financing, led by CIT, backs the storage system portfolio that Macquarie Capital acquired from Advanced Microgrid Solutions (AMS) in August 2016. Since the acquisition, Macquarie and AMS have been jointly developing and constructing the portfolio, which is expected to come online in phases over the next 12-24 months. AMS, which led the development of the portfolio, will serve as the asset manager of the projects.

“Macquarie Capital is proud to have closed this first-of-its-kind financing for these critical battery storage infrastructure assets in Southern California,” said Michael Silverton, head of Macquarie Capital for the U.S. and Latin America.

“CIT is pleased to achieve this landmark project finance transaction, further demonstrating our commitment to supporting innovation and sustainable solutions in the energy sector,” said Mike Lorusso, group head and managing director of CIT’s Energy Finance business.

“Macquarie is financing a revolution in the energy industry,” said Susan Kennedy, CEO of AMS. “The era of energy storage has begun.”