Sunrise brief: D.E. Shaw finances Michigan solar project


D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments announced the financial closing of Assembly Solar III, a 79 MW solar project in Lennon, Michigan. The company said it is moving forward with construction after securing both construction debt and tax equity financing for the project.

Financing for the construction and operation of the project was provided by a syndicate of lenders, including HSBC as Coordinating Lead Arranger and CIBC, National Cooperative Services Corporation, and Truist as Joint Lead Arrangers. PNC Bank provided a commitment for tax equity financing.

The Assembly Solar III project is the third phase of the Assembly Solar project in Michigan to begin construction. The projects were developed by Ranger Power, a utility-scale solar developer based in Chicago, in partnership with D.E. Shaw, and are being built by McCarthy Building Companies. Assembly I began operating in December 2020 and Assembly II is slated to enter service in the third quarter.

Assembly III signed in the first half of 2020 a long-term power purchase agreement with DTE Electric for the project’s output. Once completed, the Assembly Solar cluster will total 239 MW.

Capstone solar project enters service

Capstone Infrastructure Corp. and Obton A/S said that their 132 MW Claresholm solar project in Alberta, Canada, achieved commercial operation. Most of Claresholm’s power and associated emission offsets are sold to TC Energy under terms of a power purchase agreement. The rest of the electricity will be sold into Alberta’s wholesale power pool.

Capstone operates more than 750 MW of installed capacity across 29 facilities in Canada, including wind, solar, hydro, biomass, and natural gas co-generation power plants. Obton is a Danish solar investor and developer with more than 10 years of experience in the solar PV market.

Site search for charging production

Barcelona-based electric vehicle charging company Wallbox said it is searching for a location to establish a U.S. manufacturing facility. The company was founded in 2015, entered the U.S. market in 2020, and launched the U.S. version of Pulsar Plus, its residential charging product on Feb. 1.

Since January 2020 the company has expanded its distribution from 30 countries to 61 countries. Wallbox said it is also expanding its manufacturing base in Europe, where the company is building a factory in Barcelona to produce chargers for residential, semi-public, and public uses. That new factory, announced earlier this year, is planned to start operating in the third quarter.

GM leads battery fundraising

Li-Metal battery firm SES said it completed a Series D funding round of $139 million with funding from General Motors, SK Inc., Temasek, Applied Ventures LLC, Shanghai Auto, and Vertex.

The company said the new funding will help accelerate technology development, expand its technical, business and manufacturing teams, and expedite the commercialization of Li-Metal batteries. Through a recent joint development agreement with GM, SES and the automaker will build a prototyping line in Woburn, Massachusetts, for a high-capacity, pre-production battery by 2023.

NextEra buys wind

NextEra Energy Partners will acquire from Brookfield Renewable a 391 MW portfolio of four operating wind assets located in California and New Hampshire for a base purchase price of $733 million.

Almost all of the portfolio’s capacity is contracted with investment-grade counter parties and a cash available for distribution (CAFD)-weighted remaining contract life of around 13 years at the time of closing. The company said the assets are in markets with long-term renewables demand, expected to support potential re-contracting or repowering opportunities after the initial contract terms. The assets included are: Alta Wind VIII, 150 MW wind generating facility in California; Windstar, 120 MW wind generating facility in California; Coram, 22 MW wind generating facility in California; and Granite, 99 MW wind generating facility in New Hampshire.

FTC Solar roadshow

FTC Solar said it launched the roadshow for its initial public offering of shares of its common stock. FTC is offering more than 18 million shares at a price expected of between $18 and $20 per share, before underwriting discounts and commissions. FTC said it also expects to grant underwriters a 30-day option to buy up to an additional 2.8 million shares at the initial public offering price.

Barclays, BofA Securities, Credit Suisse, and UBS Investment Bank are acting as joint book-running managers and representatives of the underwriters for the proposed offering. HSBC is acting as a book-running manager and Cowen, Simmons Energy | A Division of Piper Sandler, Raymond James and Roth Capital Partners are acting as co-managers for the proposed offering.

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